12.5 C
Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Southwest Flight Attendants Go to Federal Court in Bid to Win The Right to Paid Sick Leave

- Advertisement - Booking.com
- Advertisement -spot_imgspot_imgspot_imgspot_img

The union for Southwest Airlines flight attendants has requested permission from a federal court to take part in a case that the airline has filed against the state of Colorado over a paid sick leave regulation that Southwest has been found to have violated.

The Healthy Families and Workplaces Act, which Colorado approved in January 2021, is “comprehensive and pervasive,” according to Southwest, which has refused to comply with the law for its flight attendants located in Denver.

The Healthy Families and Workplaces Act guarantees employees’ rights to take paid sick time without a doctor’s note and to effectively bank up to 48 hours of sick time each year that can be utilized whenever they like.

Although Colorado labor officials have fined Southwest more than $1.3 million for alleged violations of the sick leave law, the airline contends that flight attendants should be governed by a global collective bargaining agreement it has with the TWU Local 556 union.

Every time a flight attendant is absent due to illness, they are given points under the union contract. If they accumulate too many points, they may face disciplinary action or possibly termination.

Additionally, the airline is permitted to declare a state of emergency during times of disruption, such as during Southwest’s epic Christmas meltdown the previous year, which prevents flight attendants from using any sick days without a doctor’s note.

Despite the fact that both policies have been found to be in violation of the Healthy Families and Workplaces Act, Southwest has sued Colorado on the basis that federal laws governing the aviation sector supersede state and local laws.

TWU Local 556 worries that Colorado is currently negotiating a deal with Southwest that may weaken the state’s rights for aviation workers.

“When flight attendants are sick, they need to be able to stay home without fear of losing their jobs or the added pressure of being forced to go without,” commented Corliss King, the vice president of the TWU Local 556 union.

“Colorado signed this protection into law. The government of Colorado should demand that Southwest Airlines and other major corporations follow the law and provide this protection for workers.”

Airlines have been eager to exempt themselves, claiming that the Airline Deregulation Act from the 1970s brings flight attendants and pilots under the purview of federal laws. A number of other states, including Arizona, California, Connecticut, Maryland, Oregon, and Washington, have their own paid sick leave laws.

Depending on the outcome of negotiations between Colorado and Southwest, flight attendants could be excused from the state’s paid sick leave requirement provided that they are covered by a collective bargaining agreement.

A similar exemption would permit Southwest to manage flight attendants in accordance with a single set of guidelines while giving the union additional negotiating power during contract negotiations.

State officials in California adopted a similar stance earlier this year when they decided to exempt flight attendants from regional refreshment break regulations that were mostly incompatible with how flight attendants perform their jobs.

The Association of Flight Attendants (AFA-CWA) supported the exception because it provides the union more clout at the negotiation table.

- Advertisement -spot_imgspot_imgspot_img
Latest news
- Advertisement - Get a .com now from $4.99*/yr with GoDaddy!
- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -spot_imgspot_imgspot_imgspot_img
- Advertisement -spot_imgspot_imgspot_imgspot_img
Related news
- Advertisement -spot_img


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here