US Airways flight attendants ratify joint contract

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Flight attendants at US Airways have ratified a joint labour agreement, after two earlier tentative agreements were rejected.

The Tempe, Arizona-based carrier's 6,800 flight attendants ratified the contract by a 60 percentage point margin out of votes cast, with 80% supporting the agreement and 20% against, according to the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA). It includes a stipulation that four-party talks regarding a joint collective bargaining agreement between American flight attendants, US Airways flight attendants as well as management of both airlines begin within 30 days.

The agreement brings US Airways and America West Airlines flight attendants under a single contract for the first time since the carriers merged in 2005.

"We are very pleased that our flight attendants have ratified this new contract," says Doug Parker, chairman and chief executive of US Airways, in a statement.

AFA US Airways presidents Roger Holmin and Deborah Volpe say in a statement: "US Airways flight attendants stood strong and secured strong economic improvements and job protections. Together, we are well positioned to advance as key partners in the merger with American Airlines and will continue our work to further improve wages, benefits and work rules for all flight attendants at the new American."

AFA and US Airways reached a tentative agreement in January. Flight attendants at the airline rejected two previous agreements in September 2012 and March 2012.