By Justin Madden, Legislative Affairs Director
There is a misleading issue that permeates our craft and threatens to keep the focus away from moving forward if not addressed properly. Why isn’t the Aircraft Maintenance Technician (AMT) classified as skilled labor, and is instead classified as semi-skilled, or worse yet, unskilled labor? What, if anything, can be done about it? These questions are consistently brought up by our members, and are a battle cry by some who honorably seek professional recognition for the craft. Recently, the Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA) was made aware of an effort on Facebook to change this incorrect designation. As the union who faithfully promotes and represents the AMT, AMFA is keenly aware that our technicians work on highly complex aircraft and associated systems, requiring education, training, and government certification just to get started in the craft. The investment in these prerequisites, not to mention tools and other essential items, is easily tens of thousands of dollars or more. To be considered anything but skilled labor is demeaning to the craft and a slap in the face to the skilled professionals who comprise it, and regardless of the issue, AMFA will never stand idly by when our significance is challenged.