With the U.S. Department of Transportation's decision to grant a foreign air carrier permit to Norwegian Air International in December 2016, the U.S. airline industry faces a grave threat. Much like what happened to U.S. maritime shipping, Norwegian Air International's flag-of-convenience model will kick off a global race to the bottom. More and more carriers will establish subsidiaries in foreign countries with lax labor laws, tax loopholes, and weak safety and security oversight. The impact would be devastating for the hundreds of thousands of hard-working men and women who keep our nation's airlines flying.
To address this issue, Congressmen Peter DeFazio of Oregon, Drew Ferguson of Georgia, Rick Larsen of Washington, and Frank LoBiondo of New Jersey have introduced H.R. 2150, aka the Flags of Convenience Don't Fly Here Act. This legislation would ensure that permits issued by the Department of Transportation to foreign air carriers under the United States-European Union Air Transport Agreement of April 2007 do not undermine labor rights or standards. If this legislation had already been signed into law, the chances of Norwegian Air International receiving a permit would have been slim to none.
If you are represented by one of these four men in the House of Representatives, we do not need you to do anything. (Click here to find out who represents you in Congress.) If you are represented by one of the 431 other members of the House, you can join our advocacy effort by clicking here.