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American Airlines Workers To Protest Pension Cuts, Healthcare Costs

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – American Airlines workers at Miami International Airport are expected to take part in a picket protest on Wednesday to show their disapproval of planned layoffs, pension cuts and rising healthcare costs.

Earlier this month, the financially troubled air carrier announced that it would cut 13,000 jobs, but did not say how many of laid off would be here. American Airlines has about 9,000 employees in South Florida. With 300 flights a day out of Miami, the Fort Worth-based airline is responsible for more than half the traffic at MIA.

CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald reports members of the Transport Workers Union, flight attendants, retirees, family members of employees and others will take part in the protest which will be just one of several planned for airports around the country.

Last November, the parent company of the airline, AMR Corp., filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

“We’re standing firm for our families and for the future,” said TWU International President James C. Little. “AMR’s draconian plan to offshore maintenance work and outsource other jobs is bad for American and bad for America and must be challenged.”

The company lost $904 million last December which was more than in the first nine months of 2011 combined. The losses came despite American charging an average of 7 percent more on tickets than in the second quarter, and imposing fees for some previously free services.

CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald contributed to this report.

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