(New York) American Airlines announced Wednesday that it would lay off 19,000 workers starting Thursday as politicians disagreed on an extension of aid to the aviation industry weakened by the pandemic.
Posted September 30, 2020 at 8:15 PM
However, the company's CEO, Doug Parker, left a door open: "We will cancel" these layoffs "and recall the members of the affected team" if Democrats and Republicans manage to compromise in the days. close, he said in a message to employees and consulted by AFP.
Meanwhile, the government support expires on Wednesday. It was intended to help companies pay the salaries of their pilots, flight attendants and mechanics.
American Airlines, which like the other major airlines had pledged in the spring not to fire anyone until September 30, had warned in late August that it would have to part with 19,000 people if an extension was not passed.
However, talks between Democrats and Republicans on a new plan to support the economy, should they resume in Washington on Wednesday, are still ongoing.
Parliamentarians may also be trying to pass a text that relates only to the extension of the grant program to the aviation sector.
"Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that all these efforts will succeed," complained Mr. Parker.
Along with the bosses of other large corporations and union representatives, he has been advocating in all directions for this aid to be maintained in Washington for weeks.
Air traffic, which plummeted at the start of the pandemic, is far from normal.
Many passengers remain reluctant to fly in a confined space, international flights are still severely restricted and business travel is half mast.
According to government figures, the number of customers passing security at US airports is still down about 60% to 70% from the same period in 2019.