FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Jonna Huseman, email@example.com
Washington, DC — John Samuelsen, International President of the Transport Workers Union, issues this statement in response to President Biden nominated Michael Whitaker for FAA Administrator:
“As the largest airline union in the U.S. with members in nearly every frontline job across 17 carriers and multiple airline contract service providers, the TWU looks forward to working with Mr. Whitaker once he is confirmed in this new role as FAA administrator.
“Safety incidents in our airspace are on the rise and assaults on airline workers have dramatically increased over the last several years. More and more aircraft maintenance jobs are being sent to low-cost foreign facilities which enjoy lower drug, alcohol, and inspection standards, while employers feign labor shortages as an excuse to undermine U.S. standards. Also, training and safety standards in the U.S. have been called into question with the deaths of three ground service workers in the past year alone.
“Internally, the FAA faces a rule-making backlog that is more than a decade old and a recalcitrant culture of denialism that has prevented any major improvements for years. At the same time, the FAA is beginning to grapple with new air systems – like air taxis – which have the potential to create massive changes in this industry. New innovations must first prove that they can be integrated safely into our transportation system and create good union jobs in the process.
“An effective FAA Administrator is urgently needed to ensure the agency can simultaneously address years of stagnation and prepare for the future in a way that prioritizes the working people who are so integral to the aviation industry.”