Alaska Airlines flight attendants picket ahead of January strike vote

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Travelers going through Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport or heading through Seattle-Tacoma Airport may see Alaska Airlines flight attendants picketing outside the airports on Tuesday, as the Association of Flight Attendants has called for a nationwide “day of action.”

The flight attendants are demanding significant pay increases and say they were motivated to strike after Alaska Airlines management told them their contract proposals were not economically feasible, leading to stalled contract negotiations n October, but then the airline announced it was buying Hawaiian Airlines for $1.9 billion.

The pickets are scheduled for seven airports, including Anchorage, Seattle, Portland, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, and Washington D.C.

The union announced on Tuesday that ballots will be sent to 6,800 Alaska Airlines flight attendants after Jan. 1, with the strike vote taking place Jan. 8 through Feb. 13.

27 COMMENTS

  1. I’m glad I am not one of these peoples. It would be embarrassing to be outside picketing. I wouldn’t even picket to raise my 15.00 wage, picketing be too embarrassing. I’d be one of the employees quietly walking past heading for the time punch station to clock-in another day while my coworkers are embarrassing themselves. Too bad AA doesn’t have a line of applicants who already went through its training waiting for a job as a flight attendant. Then AA could terminate these employees and bring on the new crew who may be more reasonable, more humble, and more thankful. Cause I still think 37.50 per hour is a lot of money. Every two weeks I think their bi-weekly paycheck would be enough to live on without being dependent on family members nor government. I am content at my 15.00 per hour, but who doesn’t want more wage I’d want 37.50 if it was my wage. I’d be embarrassed to be saying it’s not enough after I’ve worked at 15.00. One day 37.50 may very well not be enough while inflation continues under printing money we don’t earn, raising wages for employees who don’t deserve it nor worked for it, unfair taxes, market manipulations and price gauges.

    • Keep in mind that pilots and flight attendants only get paid while the engines are turning, so 37.50 isn’t as much as it sounds; it could equate to $25 or less per actual hour spent at work depending on the itinerary. I’m glad, however, that you have taken it upon yourself to decide how much is “enough” for others because clearly we are incapable of making that determination for ourselves.

  2. This sucks. Sorry I bought our tickets through them for our honeymoon that we never got. 31 years of marriage and finally getting a honeymoon after raising 4 of our 5 children and now proud grandparents of 11 grandchildren. If this strike effects our trip it will cost them all the money we loose and this ticket voucher they will offer will not cut it. If they can’t make it on 37.50 a hour ,then budget your money better or find other work.

  3. It’s going to be a huge issue thru out the entire airline industry . With the govt infused pilot shortage driving the pilot wages thru the roof , flight attendants are demanding justifiable raise increases and will probably get them . Big question how long will airlines survive with these increased cost of pilots and crews . I think it’s going to become so expensive to fly that ordinary folks will not be able to afford to buy a plane ticket . Commercial jets are seeing huge increases in production costs as well . I would imagine 20-30% higher to produce a new Boeing over what was pre Covid . Jet fuel is way up as well .

  4. Wow, so much hate on here. They have the right to have an informational picket. The article does not state they make $37.50 an hour, how did that come up? Flight attendants are not on the time clock till the aircraft door is shut. So, as we all board the plane and are asking for assistance and needing assistance, it’s on their time. Anyone want to work for free?

    • Here we go again. Stacy above says they work for $2.50 per hour while on the ground and you say its actually $0.00 per hour. Neither of you reference how the airlines gets away with paying less than minimum wage for employees providing work. A time clock is irrelevant to the question. An employee working for an employer is, by definition, on duty. I think there is plenty of nonsense being peddled on this discussion board.

      • The government only looks at total pay divided by total hours worked. As long as that number is greater than the applicable minimum wage, it’s legal. It works the same way in many states with servers at restaurants: The restaurant doesn’t need to actually pay minimum wage as long as whatever they do pay, plus all the tips earned by the server, adds up to at least the minimum wage.

  5. Perhaps they might be better served to take some customer service classes during this apparent downtime? If AK Airlines flight attendants didn’t treat people with indifference and contempt, especially in 1st class and in the Board Room, I’d fly AK Air more often.
    I remember when they treated people like actual customers and very often as one big family. My last fiasco flight was enough to convince me it’s the Seattle based staff who are the problem. Antagonistic service is becoming the norm.

      • I’ll bet they would be a lot more polite, courteous and helpful if you didn’t refer to them as “flight servants”. They are called flight attendants and their primary purpose is to get you out of the airplane safely in the event of an emergency. All of that serving of drinks and snacks is to kill time until they need to perform their actual duties.

  6. Freezing Beanies. What a sight. Guess when they applied for their entry level unskilled jobs that they were unaware of the pay offered. A senior beanie at Seattle Air makes more in pay and benefits than most regional pilots. Hospitality jobs were never intended to be a sole source of family income, just a starting job to learn skills. Higher pay based on merit and value to the business should be at the discretion of the employer who wishes to retain good help. Based on my observations as a customer, many of these should be given the opportunity to move on. But the union doesn’t make allowances for the business to make these decisions. That said, I will admit that many attendants have made my experience pleasant in the past. And they are required to be there by law to help get us out at the scene of the accident. Or landing. God bless them.

    • They’re all landings. One way or another. By the way I’ve been treated on most recent flights, I doubt I’d get much help from that same staff in an emergency.

  7. To all you people reading this article thinking Flight Attendants are paid $37.50 per hour (which is incorrect as well) on this contract, you are completely mistaken.. this is not an hourly rate, it is a tfp rate (“trip for pay”), meaning it is the pay we receive for distance flown, not hours. I am a flight attendant, we are not paid for every hour we are at work, we aren’t even paid for the boarding process. We have to be checked in at the airport an hour prior to departure, then we have to be at the plane 45 minutes prior to departure (for every flight), and the guests start boarding 40 minutes prior to departure. During this time we are checking medical and emergency equipment, ensuring they are all present and working properly, we are making sure we are provisioned and catered correctly, monitoring guests while they are boarding making sure they are not intoxicated or a threat to the flight, and the list continues.. we also are not paid for the time between flights. So imagine you are working 3 flights in one day, your report time is 5am, so you have to be checked in at the airport at 5am, you have to be physically at the plane by 5:15 am, passengers start boarding at 5:20 am, and flight leaves at 6am. For the first hour you’re at work you are not paid…you now land at your initial destination and you stop getting paid for the first flight when the boarding door opens…passengers are still on the plane deplaning and you are not getting paid. Then you have to wait 1.5 hours for your next flight, well guess what, during that 1.5 hours that you are at work and waiting for your next flight you are not getting paid. Then the boarding process starts all over again, you are not paid for that boarding process…and this continues throughout your day… so you could essentially check in for your flight at 5 am at the airport, end your day at 5pm, and only get paid 5 hours of work, because remember we are paid on distance flown … so for 12 hours of work, (I’m not even adding the time it takes to get off the plane after all passengers have deplaned, thru the airport, getting on the shuttle to the hotel on a layover, checking into hotel..this usually adds another couple hours to your work day)…so if this were a real work day, which is quite common, let’s take your $37.50 since that’s the “hourly rate” you think we are making (which for the first 5 years you are not making this tfp rate, but much lower), but for your sake we’ll use $37.50… multiple this by the 5tfp you are getting paid for the distance flown (our average work day is 5tfp), then divide this by 12 hours you worked in this example which is quite common.. and you get $15.63 per hour… lower than minimum wage in most cities now. This is why you cannot assume you know something until you learn the real facts… we deserve a raise, we are hardly getting by…we are all based in very expensive cities. I for one am single, live alone and cannot afford a one bedroom apartment in the city I am based, I live in a tiny bachelor studio, I do not over spend or over consume, and still hardly getting by. For the amount of dedication, time, and care we put into our jobs to ensure passengers are safe and taken care of, we deserve much more than scrapping by…please do your research before making false statements, thank you.

    • From the treatment I’ve received lately, you’re correct. Many flight attendants do not get what they deserve. Which is fired. Try treating people as fellow human beings and I will support your efforts. There are still many AK Air flight attendants who do a wonderful job. But Seattle based staff are incredibly rude as a rule and at times confrontational. To the point of my wife asking me what I did to tick off the flight attendant. I’m just sitting here minding my own business and wanting to be left alone. “No I didn’t preorder food and I’m not interested in eating anything. But thank you.” Obviously not the correct answer for the man haters.

      • FreedomAK, I’m sorry that you were mistreated by a FA. I’m sure everyone has some story of some sort of abuse by a FA at any airline. Please don’t rope all of us together. There are those of us, who do enjoy our job and do go beyond our required service because we want to make your flight special. We enjoy our job, and the passengers we meet, and the places we go. Yes there are “bad apples,” but that’s in every industry/job. Please keep that in mind. I think asking for a raise in wages isn’t an unreasonable request, since Alaska Airgroup is spending 1.9 billion to purchase another airline all while telling flight attendants they have no money. It’s a slap in the face really.

  8. $37.50 to put up with fat slob Alaskans? not enough. gate 37 at sea-tac looks like a homeless camp at LA or Portland. people buy $80K pickup trucks to sit in 1980’s bluejeans, stained with tabaccy and captain Morgan. loudmouth trash on planes, battling line tv contestants.

    sadly alaska has become a flyover rural state. usa producing record oil production and our state, home of S.B.21 can’t fill a pipeline. blame Biden while paying Parnell to be Prevost. this state smokes too much crack, drinks too much, smokes too much and has a BMI higher than the average IQ

    • Behinder, you sound like a Democrat who unfortunately works too long and too hard for way too little. However it’s not the Alaskan paying full fare for every flight that is to blame. I submit that your wokster idiot Seattle management is culpable for your woes. None of them could carry Bruce Kennedy’s jock strap and IMO are running a once great airline into the dirt.
      I’m with ya Sis as are many of your Alaskan Passengers, so lighten up!

      P.S. I don’t own an $80,000 pick up and never smoked Camels or Crack but still laughed at your descriptions of Alaskans!

  9. Maybe the ticket should be proportionate to weight of passenger and their carry on . This would fix a lot of issues . Try sitting next to a 400 pound person on a three row seat . I have , fricken crazy three and a half hours . Then had to sit another hour to Fbks . Miserable trip . Reminds me of ridding in baggage compartment of C-310 as young child with parents chain smoking in front . The good old days ! I think they are coming back . I never thought you could gross out a Boeing 737 with passengers . I bet the leg from Seattle to Fbks , getting close to being overweight .

  10. I think slavery is still illegal in this country. Yet I have seen applicants lined up for blocks for a chance to apply for these inhumane jobs. If airlines are your gig, there is always a job as a baggage handler, ticket agent, ext., that pays straight by the hour, unlike all aircrew positions. Pilots never have been paid for ground time either, but also know this before hiring. Most major airlines have a guaranteed minimum monthly pay that you can budget on. If you don’t like it get a different job. I spent forty years in the industry, listening to fellow crew members complaining about pay, yet they never quit. As Bob Reeve always said, flying beats working. You can always have the extra meals if times are tough.

  11. For their roles as mask mandate enforcers against their captive audiences, may we cordially invite flight attendants to shove their strike, and their picket signs, where the sun never shines.

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