If American Eagle wants to continue to be American Airlines regional feeder, it has to be more competitive.
CEO Dan Garton laid out $75 million in labor cuts for the unions.
Flight attendants left their meeting with AMR shell shocked. They said they were led to believe cuts would be minimal, but now believe the longest-serving employees were targeted for the biggest give backs.
“When you saw things that were not even-cost savings to the company and its just something they want out of the contract, its completely unfair and uncalled for," said Robert Barrow, president of Association of Flight Attendants.
The union said senior flight attendants would no longer have priority on routes or down time. They say it is another strong arm tactic by an arm which already laid out 13,000 job cuts for American Airlines.
Transport workers say the parent company wants to take its terms to bankruptcy court without a compromise.
"It’s basically a scorched earth proposal," said James Little, TWU president. "Are they asking for more than what is necessary? I would say yes."
American Eagle said it can avoid layoffs by cutting 500 jobs through attrition and more favorable work rules.
It can save $75 million per year with wage freezes, increased workloads, requiring minimum hours for benefits, and fewer paid holidays and vacation times.
“What they've done to us will take us down to contractual provisions from the 1980s,” Barrow said. “I just don't believe it’s fair."
There is still talk of American Eagle becoming its own company and competing for outside business to feed other mainline carriers.
For now, it is sorting through bankruptcy with, and asking its employees to keep it flying for AMR.