Flight attendants push for legislation against passenger violence

Viral videos of airline passengers acting badly have become so commonplace that industry workers are pushing back.

Tuesday at Newark Liberty International, flight attendants, and union reps held a day of action calling for stronger federal policies to protect airline workers from violent customer behavior

Thom McDaniel, a flight attendant with Southwest Airlines said, "Pre-pandemic we would have assaults happening on airline workers at about 300 a year, and those increased by about 3,000% in 2020, and they're continuing to go on."

The Transport Workers Union says so far this year, the FAA has received nearly 1,300 reports of unruly passengers. More than 5 reports a day.


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In 2021 the TWU says the number was just shy of 6,000 for the entire year.

Right now, Congress is considering a bill "The Protection From Abusive Passengers Act", which will ban passengers from airline travel if they engage in abusive behavior towards airline employees.

"We've had flight attendants go home with black eyes, broken teeth, broken ribs. We had a flight attendant who was attacked with a spoon that was sharpened and attacked with it," McDaniel added.

Yosselyn Malave is from New Jersey, but lives in Orlando. She supports the bill, especially after seeing how fellow travelers reacted to flight delays Tuesday morning.