CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Workers at Charlotte Douglas International Airport feel like travelers have forgotten how to act as air travel rebounds.
"My agents, who have been put on the frontlines of these issues, deserve to know that their safety is a priority," said Donielle Prophet, president of Communications Workers of America.
She's worried about the safety of her union's workers who serve every traveler going through Charlotte Douglas Airport after continuous confrontations with passengers that, at times, escalate to violence.
"Oh, it sucks. It sucks, it's just getting extreme," she said.
On Monday, she and others took their concerns to Charlotte City Council. Her plea to city leaders came after the latest incident where Prophet said airport workers were assaulted by a drunk passenger after they denied him access to a plane.
"He became extremely violent physically assaulting two of our members and verbally attacking another Piedmont agent," Prophet explained.
She told the city council that no charges were ever filed, which she argued sends a troubling message to everyone.
"That there are no consequences for their actions against airline workers in the Charlotte Douglas International Airport," she said.
It's the latest in a series of tense travels through Charlotte's main airport.
There have been midflight fights, passengers refusing to wear masks per policy forcing an airplane to turn around, and one case of a man removing the emergency exit door of a plane to climb out after a two-hour delay on the tarmac. He was later arrested by police.
"We're seeing verbal attacks daily on our flight attendants, we're seeing physical attacks as I said with a frequency that I've never seen before," said Paul Hartshorn, Jr. with the Association of Professional Flight Attendants.
At the city council meeting on Monday, Prophet called for more to be done to keep workers safe.
"As city council members these incidents should concern and outrage you as well," she said.
As per policy, councilmembers did not respond to Prophet's concern but Mayor Pro Tem Julie Eiselt thanked the workers for what they do and promised to look into it.