Washington, DC – After months of intense pressure from a broad labor coalition, including the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA), the United States Department of Transportation (DOT) today denied an exemption for a foreign air carrier permit to Norwegian Air International (NAI). AFA urges the DOT to close the door on NAI permanently by rejecting the foreign air carrier permit outright. AFA International President Sara Nelson issued the following statement:
“The DOT’s decision to deny an exemption for NAI is particularly meaningful as our country gets back to work after celebrating the achievements of American workers over the Labor Day holiday. The DOT’s decision upholds decades of work by AFA and our colleagues across the globe to create opportunities for aviation workers while expanding business. We recognize Secretary Foxx for his leadership in ensuring that the U.S. aviation system remains the safest in the world. We urge the DOT to reject the outstanding foreign air carrier permit outright in order to maintain labor standards and U.S. safety and security regulations.
“For nearly 70 years, AFA has been dedicated to protecting the Flight Attendant career, standing against any attempt to create a position that has little room for advancement and no job security. By working closely with key counterparts across the world, we gave workers a strong voice in shaping the future of aviation.
“In our global aviation environment, it is imperative that we all work together to ensure that workers are treated fairly and are recognized for our role in their airline’s success. For several months, we have joined our sisters and brothers and stood united against NAI’s scheme to severely undercut our airlines and threaten our profession. Together we pushed back against this attempt and we now redouble our efforts to protect good jobs.
“AFA remains dedicated to creating opportunities that expand business by working collaboratively so that everyone is able to share in the success. Today’s decision is a positive step in protecting the U.S. aviation market but it is imperative that the DOT also reject NAI’s application for a foreign air carrier permit. We simply cannot support foreign carriers who dodge laws and regulations and create a global race to the bottom.”