Everyone Wants a Bigger Piece of the Pie

There are some unhappy workers in our industry. They are fed up with low wages and increased outsourcing by the airlines — the same airlines that are recording record profits. They feel that their contribution to those airlines' profits have been ignored and they want increased pay! After all, nearly 40 percent of these workers make under $15.00/hour according to a press release sent to D.O.M. magazine by the Transportation Trades Department of the AFL-CIO.

No, i'm not talking about aircraft mechanics. These are airline food workers.The press release says that low wages are not the only thing food and service workers have to worry about. "Two of the largest airline contractors are notorious violators of the law, and have racked up dozens of infractions related to employee pay and workplace safety," The press release says. "Food caterers, especially, face tremendous pressure to keep pace with busy schedules despite being understaffed, working exceptionally long hours — some have reported clocking up to 70 hours in one week — and in extreme weather conditions. Yet, because of the outsourcing model they rely on, airlines are able to turn a blind eye to egregious, often illegal practices of the contractors they use."

A&P mechanics have plenty of responsibilities. Our training allows us to maintain the airworthiness of all sorts of aircraft. Sometimes, we don't get paid what we feel we deserve is right. Some of my past coworkers even left aviation for higher-paying jobs in other industries. Those other industries (railroads, theme parks and automotive assembly plants in my personal experience) value the variety of knowledge and training that A&Ps have. Many companies in our industry has been forced to step up to the plate and pay higher wages to meet labor requirements. Airline mechanics are dealing with the same concerns of low wages and increased outsourcing. 

I guess in the end, the airlines will address these issues the way they see fit. I think it's ironic that mechanics aren't the only ones fighting for better pay and less outsourcing. I just think this is apples and oranges. You just can't compare them to each other.

What do you think? 

Thanks for reading, and we appreciate your feedback!




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D.O.M. magazine is the premier magazine for aviation maintenance management professionals. Its management-focused editorial provides information maintenance managers need and want including business best practices, professional development, regulatory, quality management, legal issues and more. The digital version of D.O.M. magazine is available for free on all devices (iOS, Android, and Amazon Kindle).

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Joe Escobar (jescobar@dommagazine.com)
Editorial Director

Greg Napert (gnapert@dommagazine.com)
Publisher, Sales & Marketing

Bob Graf (bgraf@dommagazine.com)
Director of Business, Sales & Marketing