Senate Approves Airline Relief with Worker Protections

By Richard Honeycutt, Vice President, CWA District 3
Director, CWA Airline Council

Last night, the U.S. Senate passed a $2.2 trillion economic relief bill, and the U.S. House of Representatives is expected to pass it by the end of this week. The bill includes a $58 billion aid package for U.S. airlines. 

Ensuring these funds would help prevent layoffs and furloughs was a top priority for CWA as we worked closely with Congressional leaders on this aid package. As a result of our efforts, the package includes $25 billion in grants for passenger airlines that must be used for employee wages, salaries, and benefits.

The aid package also requires that companies maintain employment levels, and it restricts stock buybacks and executive compensation for companies accepting taxpayer-funded grants and loans.

We know that CWA agents are on the front lines of this unprecedented fight against COVID-19, struggling to understand and mitigate the impacts on yourselves, your families, and our customers as things evolve at a breakneck pace. We are devoting all of our resources to working with the companies and elected leaders to get you the vital health and safety protections you need at work as well as clarity on a variety of issues such as VLOA.

We will continue to update you on developments as they relate to passenger service employees and the airline industry. In the meantime, we have posted a list of resources at CWAAgents.org. If you have questions, please send an email message to [email protected]. We will respond as soon as possible.