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American Airlines is on a hiring spree

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A new gig working within aviation is on the cards for 18,000 people around the world – with American Airlines gearing up for a major hiring blitz

American Airlines is planning to hire 18,000 workers in 2022, on top of thousands of new employees this year to cater to a rebound in travel.

According to reports, CEO Doug Parker plans to tell lawmakers during a hearing about flight disruptions in recent months that his airline is awaiting an influx of new applicants to fill the new roles.

The chief executives of American Airlines, United Airlines and Southwest Airlines, and Delta Air Lines’ chief of operations, will face questions Wednesday from the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation about mass flight cancellations and staffing struggles despite roughly $54 billion in federal payroll aid doled out to the airline industry to soften the Covid pandemic’s impact.

Just months ago, American and Southwest canceled hundreds of flights during brief periods as they struggled with staffing shortfalls and bad weather.

Both airlines have turned to incentives like extra pay or bonuses to avoid repeats during Thanksgiving, which went smoothly – as well as Christmas and New Year’s holidays which are expected to be busy.

American plans major hiring blitz. Image: File

COVID making the aviation sector sick

Airlines during the pandemic urged thousands of workers to voluntarily take buyouts or leaves of absence to help cut their labor bills since the aid package prohibited them from laying off staff.

Now they are scrambling to add workers as travel demand returns, competing in a tight labor market that has impacted retailers, restaurants, hotels and other industries.

American, which has about 130,000 employees including its regional airline subsidiaries, has hired more than 16,000 employees this year including pilots, flight attendants, mechanics and customer service agents, Parker said in written testimony ahead of the hearing.

“We believe this positive momentum will continue into next year, as we’ve set a target of hiring an additional 18,000 team members in 2022,” Parker said in his testimony.

American Airlines is one of hundreds of airlines around the world that have been impacted by COVID.

Anthony Lucas is reporter, presenter and social media producer with ticker News. Anthony holds a Bachelor of Professional Communication, with a major in Journalism from RMIT University as well as a Diploma of Arts and Entertainment journalism from Collarts. He’s previously worked for 9 News, ONE FM Radio and Southern Cross Austerio’s Hit Radio Network. 

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WhatsApp ramps up privacy features

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WhatsApp ramps up privacy features to prevent subscriber loss

The world’s two billion plus WhatsApp users will soon have greater privacy controls with new platform changes on the way.

Meta boss, Mark Zuckerberg, announced the new WhatsApp updates in a Facebook post earlier this week.  

Users will be able to make a stealthy exit from group conversations without the rest of the participants being notified.

Other changes include allowing users the ability to check messages without others knowing and controlling who sees when they are online.

These functions have been flagged as being rolled out to WhatsApp users over the next month.  

Even more significant to user privacy is a function that is still under development.

Here, WhatsApp users can allow their messages to be viewed only once with an added screenshot blocking feature.

This will prevent other users saving their communication onto their phones for future reference.  

The changes have been announced after Meta was scrutinised last year for their data sharing practices after an update of its Terms of Service.

META CEO, Mark Zuckerberg as WhatsApp ramps up privacy features

Users were concerned over suggestions WhatsApp user data would be shared and utilised by parent company Meta.

WhatsApp has always boasted about the benefits of its end-to-end encryption preventing.

The news that WhatsApp planned to share user data more widely with Meta shook users’ faith in the platform.  

As the third most popular social media platform, it seems Meta is keen to retain this market share by increasing its privacy features.

Some would say this is both to allay security fears and to prevent them from moving to other popular messaging apps such as Signal.  

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Why airline executives are being forced to face customers

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As frustrated customers take their anger out on the remaining airport checkin staff, airline executives are being forced onto the front line to face customers.

The return of summer in Europe has been overshadowed by travel chaos, leaving passengers frustrated and often out of pocket.

Thousands of people have been left to battle airport queues that last hours, long delays and thousands of cancellations.

Airports and airlines face staff shortages forcing them to reduce the number of scheduled flights – often at short notice. 

It’s a global problem, with airports and airlines rushing to hire back the thousands of positions they axed at the start of covid.

But how do you do it, and how long until things return to normal?

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Facebook hands teen’s data to police for abortion charge

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New reports reveal that Facebook has handed over data to police to help criminally punish a teenager for seeking to get an abortion

The tech giant turned Celeste Burgess’ Facebook message’s into the authorities, where she is being charged for “removing and abandoning a dead human body.”

The 17-year-old lives in Nebraska where abortion isn’t illegal, but the abortion happened via medication at 23 weeks.

Nebraska has a 20 week pregnancy cut off date, and the medication also warns against medical abortion past this time.

The teen’s mother is also facing 5 charges.

This comes amid widespread controversy after the historic Roe v Wade ruling was overturned in the United States.

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