For Immediate Release: Contact: Gil Meneses – 202-445-1570

Congress Must Step in to Safeguard the Well-Being of Passengers
and Make them a Priority

Napa Valley, CA. (April 2, 2007) – The Coalition for “Airline Passengers’ Bill of Rights” (PBOR), the fastest growing coalition of airline passengers in the country, issued the following statement from its spokesperson Kate Hanni on today’s release of the Annual Airline Quality Rating Report (AQR), which points to more delays and an overall decline in airline customer service.

“These latest AQR findings once again highlight the need for a comprehensive Passengers’ Bill of Rights that will guarantee basic rights and standards to passengers. As the AQR points out, bumped passengers, flight delays and lost bags have become the order of the day for anyone who takes to the sky for personal or business reasons. An airline spokesperson even admitted today that these problems will not improve, stating that ‘we’re going to see more delays, and those delays translate to cancellations, mishandled bags and unhappy passengers.’ These admissions by the very own airlines are simply astonishing following the hundreds of thousands of passengers left stranded at major airports over the last three months

As a result, after years of broken promises and declining customer service, Congress must now step up and use FAA reauthorization to ensure that airlines make passengers’ rights a top priority once and for all. The last thing that we should do is provide more giveaways to the airlines and less accountability to consumers and Congress. In addition the airlines’ plan for reauthorization would wrongly slash funds by $600 million, jeopardizing efforts to modernize our air traffic control system.

The flying public needs a voice and legal recourse. For the last eight years and longer, the airlines have had the opportunity to make good on their promises to improve customer service and ensure basic rights for passengers. It’s time for Congress to ensure that airlines make passengers their top priority.”