YAHOO! NEWS – American Airlines is closing its San Francisco base, potentially displacing 400 flight attendants.
Two-thirds have worked for the airline for 13 years or more, according to union calculations.
10 flight attendants told Insider a myriad of factors make it difficult to leave the Bay Area.
The mass email hit some flight attendants’ inboxes mid-flight.
“Today it’s with great regret that I let you know about our decision to close the SFO flight attendant base,” American Airlines executive Brady Byrnes said in the September memo obtained by Insider.
“On any given night, thousands of people sleep on San Francisco’s streets.” – SF Chronicle
In closing its San Francisco base, citing economic factors and shifting customer demand, American presented 400 flight attendants with a choice that many said felt impossible to make: leave the airline or leave the state.
The base is home to some of the carrier’s most senior flight attendants, two-thirds of whom have been at the airline for 13 years or more, according to the union representing American Airlines flight attendants.
By January 31, they must select an airport from a list of the airline’s hubs outside of California to work out of. For those who can’t or won’t, the only options are to retire early (if eligible) or resign, the union told Insider …
An American Airlines spokesperson said it decided to no longer have flight attendants based in San Francisco based on logistical factors including the airline’s changing size, shifting customer demand, and fleet changes.
“As we look at the future of our network, we expect that San Francisco will maintain the same level of flying it does today, but there are no plans to grow San Francisco and no future flying prospects based on our current network strategy,” they said.