Breeze Flight Attendants Spearhead Unionization Amidst Workplace Grievances

In a significant development, flight attendants at Breeze have taken a decisive step towards unionization by officially filing paperwork with the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA). This move, coming almost two weeks after the initiation of their organizing campaign, underscores the collective concerns and grievances that Breeze flight attendants are seeking to address.

The catalysts behind this unionization effort include a range of issues such as management practices, compensation concerns, inadequate accommodations during layovers, a fluid set of workplace rules, and what some attendants describe as “disrespectful treatment from management.”

AFA International President Sara Nelson voiced strong support for Breeze Flight Attendants, emphasizing their commitment to securing legal rights and a stable future with a union contract. The swift and organized response from the flight attendants echoes their determination to bring about positive change in their working conditions.

It is noteworthy that Breeze pilots had previously taken a similar route, voting to join the Air Line Pilots Association in August 2022. Currently engaged in negotiations with the management for a collective bargaining agreement, Breeze pilots are setting a precedent for collaborative dialogue between airline staff and management.

The next procedural phase for Breeze flight attendants involves conducting an election under the oversight of the National Mediation Board, as mandated by the Railway Labor Act. This pivotal step requires a majority expression of support for unionization from the flight attendants within the bargaining unit.

Sara Nelson emphasized the unity displayed by Breeze Flight Attendants, portraying a collective resolve to secure dignity and a voice at work. The filing of paperwork and the subsequent election process signal a proactive approach by the flight attendants to shape their working conditions and establish a mechanism for collective bargaining.

Despite these developments, Breeze has yet to provide an official response to requests for comment, leaving the industry and the public awaiting their stance on the unionization efforts.

Founded in 2021 by airline entrepreneur David Neeleman, Breeze operates with a budget-friendly model akin to other carriers like Allegiant and Avelo. The airline strategically focuses on routes with limited or no commercial air service, primarily catering to popular leisure destinations.

Breeze gained attention in 2021 for its unique recruitment approach, tapping into college students enrolled in Utah Valley University’s online program through work-study programs. However, this initiative faced criticism from the AFA, leading to its discontinuation following concerns about potential violations of federal labor laws.

The unfolding events within Breeze underscore the broader dynamics within the aviation industry as employees actively advocate for their rights, seeking fair treatment and representation. The collective push for unionization reflects a broader trend within the sector, as workers increasingly assert their voice and agency in shaping their professional lives. The industry, in turn, is witnessing a paradigm shift, with both management and staff navigating these changes to establish a balance that ensures a harmonious and productive work environment.