Kevin Cokely, NBC 5 News
American Airlines is cutting its schedule by 1 to 2 percent at least partly because of staffing shortages. Also, the airline says more than 11,000 TWU workers could be affected by job cuts. But union leaders and the company says the actual number of layoffs will be far less.
Thousands of American Airlines workers have learned they could lose their jobs as the airline restructures.
In the worst case scenario, 2,913 ground workers and mechanics in North Texas alone could be laid off.
In what are called WARN, or Worker Adjustment and Retraining Act, notices, the company officially informed the Transport Workers Union that a total of 11,159 TWU employees "may be affected by a job reduction" as the company restructures under bankruptcy.
In North Texas, the number includes 80 at American's headquarters in Fort Worth, 1,431 at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and 1,402 at the Alliance Airport maintenance base that American is closing.
But union leaders and company spokesmen both stressed that the actual number will be far less.
"At the end of the day, when you factor in the people who are going to voluntarily leave, then that's going to mitigate how many people are actually going to be impacted," said Darrin Pierce, president of Air Transport Local 513. "And actually, the amount of people that's going to be impacted are far less than that 11,000 number."
"Because some of the incentive programs are still open and because the business changes will take place over several months, we don't yet have final furlough numbers," American Airlines spokesman Bruce Hicks said in a statement. "We are issuing WARN notices to the unions and employees who may be affected to comply with state and federal law, but expect the ultimate impact on jobs will be far less than the number of those notified."
The layoffs are set to begin on or around Nov. 16.