As I said yesterday, there is a story behind every furlough. Careers upended. Uncertainty ushered in. Today, we’ll take another look. In Denver, the lives of two young people just changed dramatically. Two flight attendants not were only furloughed, but furloughed on the eve of their wedding day.
Flight Attendants Furloughed On Eve Of Wedding
Thousands of flight attendants were furloughed yesterday across the airline industry, including a young couple in Denver. Brittany Riley and her fiancé Peter Golembiewski are both flight flight attendants for United Airlines. Well, were flight attendants.
Golembiewski was involuntarily furloughed. Riley earlier took a 13-month voluntary furlough to avoid an involuntary furlough. And with that, two gainfully employed individuals with a bright career ahead of them flying for United are now seeking unemployment benefits.
But there’s another twist. Today they are getting married.
Riley told CBS 4 Denver:
“We’re just devastated. We should celebrating and having a great time, and we are getting married tomorrow and Congress just couldn’t get the bill passed.”
That was yesterday. Congress is still contemplating an extension for the now-expired airline Payroll Support Program but nothing has been passed yet.
And it’s not like Riley and Golembiewski are just starting out in life and can move home:
“We’re not just flight attendants; we’re a mother and a father to three very special kids…
“We have no jobs, we have no paychecks and we have three mouths we are going to have to support and figure out how to do that.”
Best of luck to you Britany and Peter!
As the latest unemployment numbers show this morning, Riley and Golembiewski are hardly alone and the airline industry is hardly unique in being adversely affected by this pandemic. Still, these personal stories remind us of how the virus (or our inability to control it) continues to inflict pain even on those who have not contracted it.
image: Brittany Riley