May 17, 2007

US Airways to Look at Employees' Concerns

US Airways to Look at Employees Concerns imagePHILADELPHIA - US Airways will look at employees' concerns about whether it is hiring enough people at Philadelphia to handle the busy summer travel season, Chief Executive Officer Doug Parker said.

The airline plans to hire 1,000 additional workers this summer in addition to the 6,158 already at Philadelphia International Airport.

Dennis Eichfeld, executive vice president of the Communications Workers union's Philadelphia local, said at the airline's annual meeting Tuesday that staffing has not been increased enough to handle 19 daily European flights the airline has scheduled this summer.

Parker told a small group of about 20, mostly company officials and employees, at the meeting that the airline needs the additional staff throughout the airport for the summer vacation travel surge, and he said he would specifically look at the needs for the international flights.

Parker also said US Airways is getting input from front-line employees in fixing glitches that are still causing some lingering problems with its new computer reservations and ticketing system.

The switch to the new system led to a March service meltdown, and Parker again apologized for inadequate technical preparation and employee training before the switch.

Problems still persist, John Hanson, president of the Communications Workers local for New Jersey, New York and New England, told Parker. He said even when the system is working it can take 10 to 15 minutes to rebook a passenger, something that formerly took one to three minutes.

"We can't talk to each other enough," Parker said. "I hear your frustration."

by Associated Press

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