After taking a huge hit to their paychecks in 2003 and weathering the storm of bankruptcy during the past year, Transport Workers Union leader John Hewitt says morale has been low for workers at the Tulsa maintenance base, but he says the merger between American Airlines and U.S. Airways could change that.
"We've been on one hell of a rollercoaster ride since basically 2003, and it REALLY got worse since November 29th, 2011," Hewitt said. "And the rollercoaster ride isn't over, but hopefully it's about to come to an end."
He say the union had already been able to negotiate some favorable terms for its workers with U.S. Airways prior to the merger.
And he said he's hopeful that after the merger, they can continue with business as usual at the Tulsa maintenance base.
He said it wasn't easy to keep the maintenance work in Tulsa during the bankruptcy.
To his knowledge, they are the only union that has been able to persuade an airline in bankruptcy not to outsource its maintenance work.
"And it wasn't an easy task, but we convinced the American Airlines management we could do that, and we know we can convince U.S. Air management why American made that decision and why it's the right decision."