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On August 22, 1945, in response to the degrading treatment of flight attendents (such as forced retirement at age 32, no-marriage policies, and weight, height, and appearance requirements) a group of flight attendents formed the Air Line Stewardesses Association, the first labor union ever to represent flight attendants.

In 1949 in order to increase their influence the ALSA merged with the Airline Pilots Association affliate, the Air Line Stewards and Stewardesses Association (ALSSA). And in 1973 the modern AFA is born when ALPA’s S&S Division became the Association of Flight Attendants.

AFA has won many victories for flight attendants both female and male. It managed to get rid of all of the policies listed in the first paragraph as well as increasing airline safety standards (such as requiring floor-level exit lights and less flammable cabin interiors). AFA has also fought to increase job security and equalize wages between both genders.

Today the AFA represents over 49,000 flight attendants at 27 airlines making it the largest union that solely represents flight attendents.

AFA is affiliated with the AFL-CIO

Most information gathered from http://www.flightattendant-afa.org

The Association of Flight Attendants is really an American (that is US) trades union, affiliated to the AFL-CIO.

However AFA Council 07, that represents airline cabin crew employed by United Airlines based in the United Kingdom has registered itself as a British Trades Union complete with affiliation to the Trades Union Congress in respect of its 800 or so members.

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