Flight Crews Look Forward to Family and Medical Leave Act Coverage
WASHINGTON, DC – Flight crews will soon have the same family and medical leave coverage that other working Americans have enjoyed since 1993. Transportation labor applauds the passage of the Airline Flight Crew Technical Corrections Act, which is expected to be signed into law soon.
“Congress never intended to exclude flight crews from this coverage,” said Edward Wytkind, President of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO. “But flight attendants and pilots have had to trade away other benefits in contract negotiations in order to receive Family and Medical Leave Act coverage that should have been theirs from the start.”
The FMLA guarantees that eligible workers can take up to 12 weeks off to care for themselves or a family member. But because of the unique way their work hours are counted, pilots and flight attendants have found it difficult – if not impossible – to meet the 1,250-hour per year threshold required for FMLA eligibility. For example, pilot duty time is capped at 1,000 hours per year, making it virtually impossible for them to qualify for this important coverage.
“It’s time that flight attendants and pilots get family and medical leave just like millions of other American workers,” Wytkind said.
Transportation unions are grateful to Sen. Patty Murray, Rep. Tim Bishop, and Rep. Thad McCotter, as well as many others, who championed this long overdue, common sense legislation.
The Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO, represents 32 member unions in the aviation, rail, transit, trucking, highway, longshore, maritime and related industries. For more information, visit www.ttd.org.