Aviation Consumer Protection Advisory Committee
In 2021, the Department appointed members and renewed the charter of the Aviation Consumer Protection Advisory Committee (ACPAC), an advisory committee initially established as mandated by the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2012 on May 24, 2012. The purpose of ACPAC is to evaluate existing aviation consumer protection programs and provide recommendations to the Secretary for improving and establishing additional aviation consumer protection programs. Pursuant to statute, ACPAC membership consists of one representative each of U.S. airlines, consumer groups, airports, and State or local governments.
The Secretary selected committee members for their expertise as well as their willingness and ability to actively participate in meeting the ACPAC's objective. The committee members are:
- Maura Healey, Attorney General of Massachusetts, as the State or local government representative and Chair of the ACPAC.
- Mario Rodriguez, Executive Director of the Indianapolis Airport Authority, as the airport operator representative.
- John Breyault, Vice President of Public Policy, Telecommunications, and Fraud at National Consumers League, as the consumer representative.
- Patricia Vercelli, General Counsel of Airlines for America, as the airline representative.
The Department anticipates that a meeting of the ACPAC will be held later this year. The meeting will be open to the public. The Department will post on its website and issue a Federal Register notice announcing the date of the first meeting after coordinating with the ACPAC members.
The ACPAC’s current Charter, drafted in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), as amended, 5 U.S.C. App. 2, sets forth policies for the operation of the advisory committee and is available online on here.
In 2021, the Department also created the Anti-Discrimination Subcommittee as a subcommittee of the ACPAC. The Anti-Discrimination Subcommittee will review airlines’ policies, procedures, and practices to prevent discrimination against air travelers based on race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, ancestry, gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation. The Anti-Discrimination Subcommittee will develop recommendations for consideration by the ACPAC on best practices relating to training and other actions that can be taken by DOT, airlines, or others to ensure nondiscriminatory delivery of airlines’ programs and activities to air travelers. Additional information regarding the Anti-Discrimination Subcommittee will be forthcoming.
The Department previously established the National In-Flight Sexual Misconduct Task Force (Task Force) as an ACPAC Subcommittee as mandated by the FAA Act. The Task Force reviewed practices, protocols and requirements of U.S. airlines in responding to and reporting allegations of sexual misconduct by passengers on board aircraft. It provided recommendations to the ACPAC on best practices relating to training, reporting, and data collection regarding incidents of sexual misconduct by passengers onboard commercial aircraft. More information regarding the Task Force is available here.
Previous Committee Activity
To view previous activities of the Committee, including Reports to the Secretary, click here.