2,900 AirTran Employees Win Collective Bargaining Rights

In an election conducted under the National Mediation Board’s (NMB) new voting guidelines, workers at AirTran won collective bargaining rights when a solid majority of the carrier’s 2,900 Fleet and Passenger Service/Reservation employees voted to join the Machinists Union.

The IAM organizing campaign at AirTran gathered fresh momentum following the announcement in 2010 that AirTran would be acquired by Southwest Airlines. AirTran stockholders have overwhelmingly signed off on the proposed merger, leaving approval by the U.S. Justice Department as the final hurdle.

“Whatever the outcome of AirTran’s proposed merger with Southwest, AirTran employees understand the need for professional representation during this critical time,” said Transportation GVP Robert Roach, Jr. “This was a grassroots campaign, and I commend our organizing committee and AirTran employees for taking this step toward a better, more secure future.”

The IAM represents Passenger Service/Reservation employees at Southwest Airlines where members earn $8.56 more per hour than AirTran Passenger Service Agents, and $9.66 an hour more than AirTran Reservation Agents.

“As airlines consolidate, merge and partner with each other to protect themselves, the employees of AirTran realize that joining together is the best protection they have,” said IAM District 141 President Rich Delaney.

Click here for more information and updates on the AirTran Organizing campaign.