State News

American Airlines might cut jobs at RDU

Posted September 4, 2008

— American Airlines has sent notices to hundreds of employees at Raleigh-Durham International Airport and four other U.S. airports that they could lose their jobs in November as the airline continues to cut flights.

American plans to cut 27 jobs at RDU – 12 airport agents, 10 fleet service clerks and five plant maintenance mechanics – spokeswoman Tami McLallen said.

Mark Burdette, American's vice president of employee relations, has said the airline would need fewer workers as the operating schedule is cut due to high oil prices and the softening economy.

Workers also will be cut Chicago O'Hare International Airport, where 353 people received the notices, and at airports in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Columbus, Ohio.

McLallen said in a story for Wednesday's online edition of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram that the letters were sent to gate and ticket agents, ramp workers, automotive mechanics and airport-based management and support staff.

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  • groovyguru Sep 4, 2008

    "How patient, caring & helpful would you be if you were in their shoes, knowing you were about to be unemployed?"

    Been there, more than once, unfortunately. It's even worse when you have to train your replacement half a world away. Imagine trying to be courteous to the person who took your job.

  • tchr313 Sep 4, 2008

    When did AA start charging for drinks/snacks? Last I heard United or US Airways or something like that was charging, but not AA.

    I do think it is absolutely ridiculous to charge for baggage. At the very least, the first bag should be free. If you are going on a flight, MOST people (except for business travelers) are going to need to check a bag.

  • raldude Sep 4, 2008

    I can say the employees with American in RDU are short staffed already. There is always a long line at their ticket counter and people constantly miss flights. I dont blame the employee, I blame greedy CEO's. As far as AA being ghetto, I disagree. I no more expect them to give me something free in coach that I expect a restaurant to provide transportation when I purchase a meal. When I go to a concert or movie, I dont get free drinks or snacks. My thoughts and prayers are with the employees. I see them weekly working hard and getting no appreciation for it.

  • TStills Sep 4, 2008

    AA is already ghetto cheap. I rode on one of their flights that was delayed 8 hours. No, thats not a typo - EIGHT hours. When I eventually got on board, they brought the drink/snack cart around and STILL tried to charge us for the 3oz Sprite and little packet of half-dozen peanuts. Thats ghetto cheap, people!

  • piperchuck Sep 4, 2008

    Air travel as we've come to know it is ending. Prices will continue to rise and the number of flights will continue to drop. As the industry returns to what it was like in its early days, a luxury only the well off can afford, long distance vacations will become more and more rare...

  • NeverSurrender Sep 4, 2008

    "How patient, caring & helpful would you be if you were in their shoes, knowing you were about to be unemployed? How patient, caring & helpful would you be in the presence of the idiotic questions & statements they probably have to listen to, knowing you were about to be unemployed? I'd daresay your once-fine patience, caring manner & helpful qualities would be put to the test too. Like mine."

    ---

    But there is no justification for employees taking out their frustrations on the passengers. I understand human nature and all that but there is still a matter of taking pride in the professional performance of one's duties.

    I realise that's a rather outmoded concept these days but some of us still believe in it.

    I remember flying DL the day they announced 20K layoffs of pilots and F/As (at an airline that had *NEVER* done that before).

    We were thrilled to make it to our destination in one piece without having the peanuts and drink flung at us!

  • meh2 Sep 4, 2008

    Labour? That's American Airlines, not British airlines.

    Tanking economy? Where?

  • CestLaVie Sep 4, 2008

    I used to be a rez agent with AA 20 years ago in Cary.

    They were a great airline to work for under Crandall. Things have certainly changed since then, but so has our nation, to include the tanking economy & declining moral values. I'm sad to see this happening to the employees. Many of you have complained about how rude AA employees were towards you & others recently. I believe this is probably indicative of a lot of airline employees today, as many more jobs will be on the line real soon as other airlines follow AA in their decisions.

    How patient, caring & helpful would you be if you were in their shoes, knowing you were about to be unemployed? How patient, caring & helpful would you be in the presence of the idiotic questions & statements they probably have to listen to, knowing you were about to be unemployed? I'd daresay your once-fine patience, caring manner & helpful qualities would be put to the test too. Like mine.

  • Try_Me Sep 4, 2008

    ""AA in particular has a big problem with major labour contracts coming due right now and these people who have had their salaries reduced, their colleagues furloughed, and their benefits/pensions slashed are angry and unprofessional.""

    A mere passing familiarity with the MEL doesn't qualify a person to say that ALL the mechanical problems...are not fixed. THAT was unprofessional. Especially to say it to a passenger. The flight attendant should have also added that these items are not required for a safe flight.

    But for a flight attendant to leave an audience thinking an aircraft that he/she straps themselves into is unsafe speaks volumes. Only a stupid person would fly an on an unsafe airplane.

  • NeverSurrender Sep 4, 2008

    "Many flight attendants know little about aircraft maintenance. If a coffe maker is broken, some will think the aircraft is unworthy."

    ---

    But they should have a passing familiarity with the MEL (Minimum Equipment List) for their type as their primary job is to ensure passenger safety...serving drinks/snacks comes well down the list.

    Simply put, the plane can be pushed with coffee makers and reading lights INOP until they get to a station where they have time for some MX rat to fix it. But if a component on the MEL list fails, that's it...the bird is out of service until MX can fix/replace the component.

    The posturing you're seeing can be named in five letters...U-N-I-O-N!

    AA in particular has a big problem with major labour contracts coming due right now and these people who have had their salaries reduced, their colleagues furloughed, and their benefits/pensions slashed are angry and unprofessional.

    As is potentially scaring the wits out of a potentially nervous passenger!

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