United Airlines mechanics face union-change hurdle 

Acquiring enough support from thousands of laid-off United Airlines mechanics appears to be the major hurdle standing between current, disgruntled mechanics and their coveted alliance with the powerful Teamsters union.

Approximately 3,000 United Airlines mechanics are stationed at San Francisco International Airport. They are represented by the Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association, which has only been representing the employees for more than four years.

United Airlines mechanic Richard Petrovsky said the union has never properly communicated with them, nor do local United mechanics think they are powerful enough to make union membership worth it.

Representatives with the local AMFA and United Airlines were unavailable for comment.

Though Petrovsky estimates they have more than the required 50 percent of employee support for the change — which would then allow the employees to hold an election that would sever their membership with AMFA — union organizers are also required to secure support from 50 percent of the laid-off or "furloughed" employees as well because they have certain lifetime rights with the union.

tramroop@examiner.com

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