At tomorrow’s markup, the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee will consider H.R. 3095, the Fair and Open Skies Act. On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO, we urge you to vote YES on the bill.
The Fair and Open Skies Act combats predatory flag of convenience air carriers who seek to fly to the U.S. while operating business models predicated on undermining labor, tax, and safety laws. Transportation unions have seen these types of anti-labor, predatory business models decimate other parts of our economy, most notably in the U.S. maritime sector. We cannot allow the same business practices to hollow out the U.S. airline industry, and those foreign airlines who seek to do so must not be rewarded with access to the U.S. market.
This legislation will provide DOT with the authority and strength it needs to protect fair wages and working conditions for U.S. aviation workers by requiring DOT to apply a public interest test to foreign air carrier applications and requiring the consideration of key economic criteria in permitting decisions. The inclusion of these standards provides strong and long-term protection against current and future labor rights abuses in our international aviation system. We cannot wait for flag of convenience airlines to establish a foothold in the domestic market before taking action.
We thank Chairman Peter DeFazio (D-OR) and Reps. Rick Larsen (D-WA), Kaiali’i Kahele (D-HI), Sharice Davids (D-KS), Rodney Davis (R-IL), Drew Ferguson (R-GA), Conor Lamb (R-PA), Don Bacon (R-NE), Jack Bergman (R-MI), and Bill Johnson (R-OH) for their bipartisan leadership on this legislation, and we strongly urge Committee members to support the domestic aviation workforce by voting YES on H.R. 3095.