Airline workers demand relief bill as thousands face furlough in October

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WASHINGTON D.C. (WCMH) — Airline workers say if Congress doesn’t act by the end of the month, thousands of flight attendants, pilots and other workers could face furloughs.

Flight attendants marched around the capitol Wednesday morning demanding Congress save their jobs.

“They have got to get a relief bill passed,” said Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants

Since March, the payroll support program, passed as part of the CARES Act, paid the airlines billions of dollars to keep planes flying while keeping flight attendants, pilots, and other employees on the job.

But the program runs out on October 1.

“There are going to be mass furloughs otherwise,” Nelson said.

Congress has yet to agree on the next COVID relief bill, and Senate Republican’s so-called “targeted bill” contains no money for the airlines.

“This is going to crumble the infrastructure of our air service,” Nelson said.

Nelson added that will impact any businesses that depend on air travel and even what arrives in people’s mailboxes.

“Because a lot of the mail is carried in the belly of our aircrafts,” she said.

Nelson says she and the other flight attendants plan to meet with members of Congress to convince them to take action before their flights are grounded.

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