Employees call Northwest handbook offensive

Northwest Airlines is apologizing for a controversial handbook the airline sent to all of its employees.  It offers advice on how to save money, including pulling items out of the garbage!

Employees say the handbook, titled "101 Ways to Save Money," makes fun of the fact that many employees are being laid off - and having to do more with less.

Flight attendant union spokesperson Angie Gilluly said the flier adds insult to injury in their current contract battle.  "It means now that we've cut your pay to nothing," she said of the airline. "We're gonna teach you ways that you can possibly live on nothing."

Attendants took issue with items such as #46, which reads, "Don't be shy about pulling something you like out of the trash."

"It's insulting and it's humiliating," Gilluly said. "They've already taken our pay.  They've taken our benefits.  There's not a whole lot more they can take, but they can take our pride and our humility."

Gilluly has already had to opt for a less-expensive place to live, #48 on the list,and she said that's enough for her.

"Frankly, I'm embarrassed for Northwest right now," she said. "I think this is a disgrace and a joke."

Northwest said the list is part of a handbook called "Coping With Job Loss" and was only intended for about 60 employees who were in transition. When Northwest was inundated with phone calls, they reviewed the article and pulled it from the handbook.
The airline acknowledges some of the tips were insensitive, offensive, and demeaning.  They issued an apology Thursday afternoon saying they deeply regret offending anyone with the handbook.