Flight Attendant Union Wants Leisure Travel Suspended, Asks For Mandatory Masks On Flights
Photo Credit: (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

Photo Credit: (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

Flight Attendant Union Wants Leisure Travel Suspended, Asks For Mandatory Masks On Flights

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Parker Diakite
Parker Diakite Apr 27, 2020

The Association of Flight Attendants is calling on the federal government to require that crew,  employees, and passengers wear masks in airports and on flights.

The request from the union comes just weeks after hundreds of flight attendants reportedly tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

In a letter addressed to the Department of Transportation and the Department of Health and Human Services, union leaders are asking for personal protective equipment (PPE) and to suspend leisure travel until the virus is contained. 

“Flight attendants have been hard hit by the virus” the letter reads. “At airlines employing AFA member flight attendants, at least 250 have tested positive for the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, and flight attendants have died as a result of the virus too. The scars run deep; recent media reports document the guilt felt by those who question if we are helping to spread the virus, feelings of fear and grief as coworkers die, and wonder about when this will all be over.”

Despite recent reports that TSA has reportedly seen a decrease in the number of passengers being screened at airports as mandated stay-at-home orders are imposed across the nation,  there are still thousands of flights being carried out each day as the airline industry is deemed essential.

By requiring masks, PPE, and ending leisure travel, the Association of Flight Attendants believes they can stop the spread of the virus among flight attendants and passengers.

“Airlines are continuing to deliver people, mail, and cargo, uniting families that are grieving or rushing to be with those who have fallen ill and transporting others who require medical treatment unrelated to the pandemic,” the letter continues.  “These are some of the many essential services provided by aviation to all of our communities that must be maintained as the pandemic continues. We believe that protecting this essential service and ensuring air travel is not aiding in the spread of the virus requires a halt to all leisure travel until the pandemic is brought under control according to health authorities.”