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Machinists Urge Airlines To Focus On Customer Service, Not Mergers

Say Executives Losing Sight Of Bigger Picture

As the oft-rumored joining of Delta Air Lines with Northwest Airlines in the holy terms of merger mania appear to be coming ever-closer to fruition, this weekend International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) General Vice President Robert Roach, Jr. issued the following statement on current airline industry maintenance and customer service concerns:

"The recent grounding of aircraft and stranding tens of thousands of passengers due to maintenance compliance issues are just symptoms of a much larger industry problem.

Airlines are increasingly outsourcing critical aspects of their maintenance programs, replacing customer service representatives with computers and failing to provide passengers with the service they pay for.

The airline industry is providing the worst customer service in its history after slashing jobs and cutting employee wages. Consumer complaints were up 60 percent last year, and more than a quarter of all flights experienced delays. This is all occurring while executives at major airlines are considering mergers to create even larger, more unmanageable carriers, producing bigger headaches for passengers.

The Machinists Union is urging executives at all airlines to refocus their efforts to provide superior safety and customer service to passengers. This industry is in chaos and senseless mergers will only make things worse."

The Machinists Union is the largest airline union in North America, representing more than 170,000 Flight Attendants, Customer Service Agents, Reservation Agents, Ramp Service Personnel, Mechanics, and related transportation industry workers... whose jobs would be threatened in the event of industry consolidation.

FMI: www.goiam.org/transportation

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