Airline Labour Laws

Airline Labour Laws
Debasmita Das   Manager HR AirCrews Aviation Pvt Ltd

·         ABA Forum on Air and Space Law
The Forum on Air and Space Law is your link to vital and timely information in the aviation arena. You'll join a group of more than 1,500 professionals who represent all areas of air and space law including airlines, airports, labour, financial communities, the FAA, DOT, NASA, as well as attorneys practicing in corporate, litigation and antitrust areas.
·         Air Transportation Regulatory Reform Act of 1978
An Act to amend the Federal Aviation Act of 1958, to encourage, develop, and attain an air transportation system which relies on competitive market forces to determine the quality, variety, and price of air services, and for other purposes.
·         Airport and Airway Development Act of 1970
The Secretary shall take affirmative action to assure that no person shall, on the grounds of race, creed, colour, national origin, or sex, be excluded from participating in any activity conducted with funds received from any grant made under this title.
·         Aviation Law - Aviation law is the branch of law that concerns flight, air travel, and associated legal and business concerns. Some of its area of concern overlaps that of admiralty law and in many cases, aviation law is considered a matter of international law due to the nature of air travel. Aviation law governs the operation of aircraft and the maintenance of aviation facilities. Both federal and state governments have enacted statutes and created administrative agencies to regulate air traffic.

·         Civil Aeronautics Act of 1938 - Under the Civil Aeronautics Act (52 Stat. 973), June 23, 1938, as modified by Reorganization Plans Nos. III and IV of 1940; and as redefined by the Federal Aviation Act of 1958 (72 Stat. 731), August, 23, 1958, promoted and regulated the civil air industry within the United States and between the United States and foreign countries in the interest of the foreign and domestic commerce of the United States, the postal service, and the national defence.
·         Federal Aviation Act of 1958 - Federal Aviation Act of 1958, as amended, involving an amount in controversy in excess of $50,000; an in rem action; seizure of aircraft; or injunctive relief.
Airline labour laws don't just protect employees' rights. They can also help keep passengers safe. Exhaustion sometimes plays a role in plane crashes, as it did in a 2013 crash in Buffalo, New York, and low wages can contribute to burnout. But airlines are also subject to the federal Railway Labour Act, which governs railroad and airline workers.
·         Labor Relations
Under the Railway Labour Act, airline employees are guaranteed much stronger collective bargaining protections than employees in most other industries. Prior to going on strike, airline employees have to go through mediation with their employers. However, if mediation fails, airline employees have the right to strike, and can engage in more extreme tactics than other employees. They can, for example, engage in secondary boycotts such as going on strike to protest the behaviour of an airline for which they do not work. If your business has a contract with an airline to provide food inspection services, additional security or other services, your employees may be able to strike against the airline to protest the behaviour of a different airline or one of the airline's contract companies. They may also engage in intermittent strikes -- something other unions are prohibited from doing.
·         Minimum Wage
Airlines are required to abide by the federal minimum wage, which is $7.25 as of 2013. If your business contracts with an airline to provide services, you'll have to pay federal minimum wage. Employees under the age of 20, however, can be paid a minimum wage of $4.25 per hour during their first 90 days of employment. Administrative, professional and executive employees -- such as an airline CEO, a pilot or a secretary -- are exempt from hourly minimum wage laws if they also make more than $455 per week.

·         Overtime Rules
Federal law requires most employers to compensate employees at the rate of time-and-a-half for all hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week. Working long hours often comes with the territory of being an airline worker, though, and federal law exempts airlines from overtime requirements. Independent contractors are also exempt from overtime laws, and if you run your own business contracting with an airline, you may be an independent contractor. However, airlines have to honour employee contracts as well as collective bargaining agreements, which sometimes mandate overtime compensation.
·         Managing Disputes
Most employees have to report union-related labour violations to the National Labour Relations Board, but the Railway Labour Act gives airline employees the right to sue in federal court without first contacting the NLRB. Like employees in other industries, airline employees can report minimum wage violations to the U.S. Department of Labour and have the right to sue to recover back pay, attorneys' fees and similar expenses related to underpayment. Employees can also sue for breach of contract if an airline breaks its collective bargaining agreements or employment contracts.


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