The agreement was reached after McCaskill initiated a ten-month series of negotiations in her Senate office on behalf of the men and women facing expiration of their recall rights after years of quality service to the company. American Airlines will extend for two years the option of laid-off flight attendants to get their jobs back at American Airlines.
The airline has made a series of substantial hires in recent months, and Senator McCaskill has been assured that these 1,200 laid-off employees will be given a chance to return to the skies. “American Airlines should be commended for doing what’s right – and I have no doubt that these returning workers will bring an exemplary level of service in the skies over Missouri,” said Sen. McCaskill.
“This was an issue of fundamental fairness, and I am simply delighted that we were able to reach a successful resolution in the holiday season.”
"Not only has Sen. McCaskill saved and preserved jobs in Missouri with her actions, but also all across the nation. This workforce looks forward to returning to our jobs with American Airlines and serving the traveling public,” said Roger Graham, a former flight attendant affected by this announcement.
Graham in a separate communication thanked the media responsible for calling attention to the problem.
These employees were furloughed following the 9/11 attacks that devastated the airline industry. They were guaranteed a five-year right to reclaim their jobs from American if new hires were made, but the growth in the airline sector was slow and many furloughed employees were facing expiration of their recall rights, and loss of benefits. McCaskill in October 2006 promised that if she were elected to the Senate, that she would try to address the layoffs. At that time the Joplin Independent had contacted McCaskill's office informing her of the situation and suggesting how her support would be of benefit to her election.
For the first of several JI articles written in October 2006, go here.