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EASTERN INTERVIEWS ATTENDANT APPLICANTS AS UNIONISTS PICKET

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About a dozen union members picketed outside a hotel Saturday where representatives of strikebound Eastern Airlines were interviewing applicants for flight attendant jobs, an AFL-CIO spokesman said.

"Eastern Airlines has rented a room and is in the process of interviewing potential flight attendants as strike breakers," said union spokesman Verlow Haddon.Union officials contend Eastern has targeted Utah as a recruiting area because of its right-to-work laws, which forbid union membership as a requirement for employment.

Hadden said those conducting a peaceful "informational picket" outside the Salt Lake Airport Hilton Hotel included members of the striking International Association of Machinists and pilots, who have honored the strike.

The machinists union struck the airlines March 4 in a contract dispute, prompting pilots and flight attendants unions to walk off the job. The strike has crippled Eastern, forcing it to suspend nearly all service and to seek protection from creditors in federal bankruptcy court.

Eastern officials this week announced plans to begin recalling 1,700 workers placed on no-work status, and implemented pay cuts for non-union employees and top management.

Some 600 employees put out of work by the closure of Eastern's Salt Lake reservations center and other operations were told an unknown number of them will be included in the initial call back.

The airline said it expects to eventually employ 17,000 people, compared to its pre-strike work force of 30,000.