American Airlines said on Tuesday it has notified more than 11,000 workers they could lose their jobs as part of its bankruptcy reorganization, and said it was cutting flights by one to two percent for the rest of September and October.
The U.S. carrier expects fewer than 40 percent of those it sent notices to, or 4,400 people, actually will be laid off in November and December, spokesman Bruce Hicks said.
The layoff notices were required under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, which requires employees to be informed 60 days before major layoffs or plant closures.
“The notices will look worse than the actual layoffs,” said Jamie Horwitz, a spokesman for the Transport Workers Union, which represents workers that received WARN Act notices.
Horwitz said about 800 employees had agreed to leave American voluntarily, a move that will further reduce the number of expected layoffs.
According to a letter sent by American to the Transport Workers Union, notices of potential layoff were sent to more than 3,000 workers in Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, where American is based; about 3,000 people in Tulsa, Oklahoma; just over 1,200 in Miami; nearly 1,000 in New York; about 900 in Chicago and lesser numbers in other U.S. cities.
In February, American outlined plans to cut as many as 14,000 jobs as it looks to streamline in bankruptcy.
American Airlines, the third-largest U.S. air carrier, filed for Chapter 11 protection in November, citing a need to decrease labor costs. The company has signed non-disclosure agreements with carriers including US Airways Group as it evaluates a potential merger.
US Airways won the backing of unions that represent American ramp workers, pilots and flight attendants earlier this year by promising to preserve thousands of jobs should a merger with American occur.