June 23, 1962 - The Flight Engineers International Association today struck Eastern Air Lines and Pan American World Airways, two of the nation’s biggest airlines. Eastern, a major domestic carrier, responded by shutting down almost immediately after picketing began at 2 p.m. Pan American, a major overseas carrier, was shut down temporarily. But it went to court and won a restraining order against the strike and within a few hours was sending planes back in the air. In Washington, the Administration moved on two fronts to end the walkout, called by the engineers in a dispute over how to reduce the number of crew members in cockpits of jet planes. First, President Kennedy, in a stern statement, denounced the strike and urged the engineers to return to work. The union refused. Second, the National Mediation Board sent telegrams to the airlines and the union inviting them to a meeting on Monday in New York with Francis A. O’Neill Jr., a member of the board.
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