Boeing has announced US $100 million in funds for family and communities affected by the crashes of Lion Air flight 610 and Ethiopian Airlines flight 302.
Ahead of Independence Day in the US, the international aircraft manufacturer said the funds will support education, hardship and living expenses for impacted families, community programs, and economic development in impacted communities.
Boeing chairman, president and CEO Dennis Muilenburg said that the company is focused on re-earning the trust and confidence from its customers and the flying public in the months ahead.
“We at Boeing are sorry for the tragic loss of lives in both of these accidents and these lives lost will continue to weigh heavily on our hearts and on our minds for years to come. The families and loved ones of those on board have our deepest sympathies, and we hope this initial outreach can help bring them comfort,” Muilenburg said.
“We know every person who steps aboard one of our airplanes places their trust in us.”
Boeing’s initial investment will be made over multiple years, with the manufacturer also revealing donations made by company employees in support of the families and communities impacted by the accidents will be matched through to 31 December 2019.
The manufacturer is currently the target of multiple lawsuits by victims’ families, including a class-action lawsuit by qualified 737 MAX pilots, and a US Department of Justice criminal investigation into the development of the jet.
Boeing told Reuters that the multi-year payout is independent of the lawsuits and would have no impact on litigation.
The jet’s return to service is not on a strict time schedule, according to the Federal Aviation Administration who has said that it “will lift the aircraft’s prohibition order when we deem it is safe to do so.”