Stop Short-Changing Endeavor Flight Attendants

Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian

As union organizing grew this spring, Delta Air Lines announced a five percent raise for thousands of Delta workers, including Flight Attendants, mechanics and RAMP.

But that raise didn't extend to Flight Attendants at Delta's wholly-owned regional carrier, Endeavor who already lag their counterparts by more than 45% in compensation and benefits. Endeavor Flight Attendants wear a Delta uniform and fly Delta-branded flights. Passengers would never know the difference. But because of aviation's two-tiered system, workers at "regional" airlines earn far less than those doing the same job for the "mainline" airlines.

Providing the same raise to Endeavor Flight Attendants would cost Delta 0.47% of their 2023 operating profit. The airline clearly can afford to pay the Delta mainline rates. Management claims Delta is the best place to work, but for thousands of Endeavor Flight Attendants who live near or in poverty, that couldn't be further from the truth. The inconsistency of treatment is a major driver for mainline Flight Attendants organizing to form their union too.

Endeavor Flight Attendants penned an open letter to Delta CEO Ed Bastian, demanding an equitable raise for workers at the regional carrier. Sign on to show your support for fair treatment of aviation's first responders.

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To: Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian
From: [Your Name]

Endeavor AFA congratulates the employees of Delta Air Lines on their well-deserved upcoming raise on June 1st. The historic profits of 2023 were the result of the hard work of all of those who served Delta passengers. This is why we are mystified and disappointed that Delta management would fail to acknowledge all of the employees who contributed to the record-breaking profits. While those who work at mainline Delta received a small raise amidst the tides of the airline’s success, Delta management seems committed to anchoring Flight Attendants at their wholly owned regional Endeavor Airlines in the depths of poverty. The disparity between the treatment of those Flight Attendants and workers at Endeavor versus mainline Delta is vast and the inequality is growing.

Delta pilots are paid significantly more than Flight Attendants and they negotiated a 34% raise that increased to 38% when their counterparts at United Airlines raised the standard in their contract further. Even with these increases, Delta Air Lines still led the industry in profits and Delta was the only airline to turn a profit in the first quarter of 2024. No doubt, the employees at Delta should be leading the industry. But Delta’s own regional carrier is falling further behind. When Flight Attendants demand more, it’s the same tired excuses that have no basis in the reality of the airline’s financials.

The average passenger cannot distinguish between the service of Endeavor Flight Attendants and Delta Flight Attendants onboard their flights. They buy their tickets at the same website or app, checking in for their flight is exactly the same, the gates are Delta gates, and the planes have the same livery. The common excuse given for poverty level wages at Endeavor is that we need to “keep our costs low to remain competitive.” Does this mean that Delta expects a small fraction of Flight Attendants and other workers to shoulder the cost of staying “competitive?” That doesn’t seem consistent with the “Delta Difference” that management so often touts.

Delta Air Lines profited $4.6 billion in 2024, more than United, American, Southwest and Alaska airlines combined, according to AP News. To pay Endeavor Flight Attendants at the same rate as mainline Flight Attendants, it would cost Delta management less than a half a percent (.47%) of their 2023 operating profit. Not only that, but the $20 million bonus awarded to Delta’s CEO for “steering the airline through COVID” would have covered almost the entire difference in pay for the 1,653 Flight Attendants at Endeavor. And Mr. Bastian would still take home $14 million for the year. How can one person profit off of the Payroll Support Program that was designed and fought for by our union and the same Flight Attendants that are kept in poverty to keep the airline “competitive?”

Many Flight Attendants at Endeavor are on government assistance. This means Delta is also causing the government to subsidize the lives of those who do the work that makes record breaking profits for the airline. Endeavor likes to brag how many people apply to be Endeavor Flight Attendants. The reason people apply to Endeavor is that they have an expectation as an employee of a company owned by Delta that they would be treated well as Delta boasts regularly about treatment of their employees. Many are disheartened to learn that Endeavor is not treated like a valuable part of the Delta team but instead dismissed as second class citizens. Endeavor Flight Attendants love their job and are proud to represent Delta. It should be quite embarrassing for the airline they represent that they are not even able to afford milk or even a birthday cake for their child.

It is time for Delta to do the right thing. Instead of claiming you are the force for global good, it is time to be it. Don’t push this letter away and say we need to negotiate with Endeavor management when you know full well it’s Delta that makes these decisions. When Delta needed pilots, the airline found money to help Endeavor attract pilots. It’s entirely within Delta’s control to do the right thing and end the disparate treatment of Flight Attendants. The annual cost for livable wages is approximately an additional $26.1 million. For an airline that profited $4.6 billion that is pennies.

On behalf of the Flight Attendants of Endeavor, we are proud to represent Delta and serve its passengers. We ask that you do the moral thing. We are hungry, we are tired and we deserve to be able to afford to live.


Endeavor AFA

Cc: Endeavor Airlines Management