Hello. Today is Friday, February 21, 2003. This is Liz Geiss, APFA InfoRep Captain, with the APFA Hotline.
The APFA National Officers, members of the negotiating team, and our advisors met with members of senior management on Wednesday. During this meeting, additional financial information was provided to the APFA for review. Additional meetings with Management are being planned.
Members of the Negotiating Committee and APFA Advisors continued work this week on researching information provided by the company. Per Resolution #3, the APFA must prepare to respond to all contingencies that may arise. The negotiators and advisors are also researching how APFA could best provide relief to the Company if and when such relief is deemed necessary, while maintaining, to the extent possible, the integrity of our contract.
Today the Department of Labor approved the National Emergency Grant Proposal filed by the Missouri Division of Workforce Development. Of the grant, over $2 million will go towards the assistance of displaced American Airlines employees in Missouri. APFA President, John Ward has been persistent in expressing his strong support on this issue to Elaine Chao, U. S. Secretary of Labor. APFA is very pleased the proposal was granted.
The APFA Quarterly Executive Committee Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, February 25th, 2003. The meeting will be held at APFA Headquarters in the Unity Pays Conference Room and will convene at 0900. There is also a Special Board of Directors meeting called by APFA President John Ward for Wednesday February 26th, 2003. This meeting will take place at the DFW Holiday Inn West in Bedford and will convene at 0800. All members in good standing are encouraged to attend all open portions of both meetings.
The CRAF page on the APFA Web site is being updated regularly with more information on CRAF flying. Flight Attendants interested in participating in CRAF flying are encouraged to access the information contained on this page and review Part II of Appendix E, beginning on page 393 of the contract.
There has been a resolution to the issue of lost high time for Flight Attendants assigned mid-month to the CRAF Reserve Pool from the system-wide CRAF Volunteer list. If a Flight Attendant lost high time projections as a result of being included in the pool in the month of February, they may now fly CRAF missions up to the amount of time in their projection at the time they entered the pool. If they elect to stop flying high time prior to reaching their high time projection, they must notify crew schedule via HISEND.
Flight Attendants flying CRAF missions should use discretion when discussing any aspect of their CRAF trips. This is for the safety and security of our crews and the military personnel we are transporting.
The proffer for Overage Leaves and Partnership Flying has been posted. In accordance with Article 16.A.7 of the contract, the company is offering these leaves to the STL base only as the overage will exist in that base. The leaves will be for the following periods:
12-months beginning April 2003-March 2004
3-months beginning April 2003-June 2003
9-months beginning July 2003-March 2004
Partnerships will run from April through June 2003.
The proffer will close at 0800 Central Time on March 3, 2003. Flight Attendants interested in the Overage Leave should submit HISEND form 32. Those interested in Partnership Flying should use form 20. The APFA Partner Finder is up and running on the APFA Web site “Reduction in Force” page to assist Flight Attendants interested in Partnership Flying to locate a partner.
APFA has notified the Company that we will be filing a Presidential Grievance concerning the awarding of these Overage Leaves in the Base of St. Louis only.
The APFA Hotel Department would like to make Flight Attendants aware that the company has begun making a series of changes to layover hotels. Management has notified APFA that they intend to move long layovers to airport locations whenever and wherever a cost savings will result. APFA President John Ward and APFA’s National Hotel Coordinator Patty Bias have made it very clear the APFA views this latest move by the company as a direct violation of Article 21 of our contract. The APFA is fully prepared to take the necessary action to preserve the integrity of our contract in this matter. If management insists on making arbitrary changes to our contract by changing layover hotels that result in cost savings, then such cost savings should be fully credited to the APFA.
Joan Wages, APFA’s Washington Representative, has learned that Senator John McCain is reconsidering introducing his bill that would require resolution of airline labor contracts using third party or “baseball style” arbitration. APFA encourages all members to take a moment to contact Senator McCain and express your concerns over the negative effects this bill would have on you and your family. Ask him not to introduce the legislation. Senator McCain can be reached by phone at 202-224-2235 or by fax at 202-228-2862. If you see Senator McCain in the airport, take the time to speak with him concerning this legislation.
Over the past few days, APFA has experienced problems with our phone system, which includes representative’s voicemail and the Officer on Duty line. This problem has been addressed.
All S80 qualified Flight Attendants based outside of STL are reminded that the Differences Training Packet for the TWA MD80 must be completed and SPC code 51 must be entered into their personal mode by March 10, 2003. To enter the code, enter your personal mode, and then type in HI22/51.
Primary vacation bids are now open for all Flight Attendants. They will close on March 7, 2003 at 0001 Central Time. Primary awards should be posted by 0001 Central Time on March 15, 2003. Secondary vacation bidding will open at 0001 Central Time on March 16, 2003 and will close at 0001 Central Time on March 23, 2003. Secondary awards should be posted by 0001 Central Time on March 31, 2003.
There will be a MIA/IMA base meeting held on Thursday, March 20th at 1300. The meeting will be at Dave and Busters located at 1 Oakwood Plaza in Hollywood, Florida. This will be an opportunity for MIA and IMA Flight Attendants to get the latest information on the company’s requests of labor and the APFA. Don’t miss this opportunity to share your thoughts and opinions.
In Industry News:
In comments to the press this week regarding the possibility of war with Iraq, Mr. Carty said, “It may well be that the government will be asked to take steps to make sure the airline industry does not simply disappear.” Carty went on to say, “Airlines are really ill-equipped to deal with another major body blow.” “All we have to go with is looking backward to what happened during the Gulf war.”
Regarding a low-cost carrier within a carrier concept, Mr. Carty said this week, ” It is not a bad idea. We are examining it, but it is not the fundamental change that we need to fix the business.” He went on to say, “We see it as a sub-strategy, not a major strategic thrust.”
Industry analyst this week said that a liquidation of United Airlines would benefit the surviving carriers. Such a scenario would help to offset the pressure the other majors are feeling from higher labor costs and low-cost carriers. United officials were quick to respond by saying that liquidation wasn’t an option. The airline said it is doing everything possible to avoid Chapter 7 and make the airline successful over time.
For more information on the airline industry and American specifically, please visit the Aviation Industry News page on the APFA Web site.
That’s it for this edition of the APFA Hotline. Please visit the APFA Web site for the latest information.
Please remember, there are 2,396 American Airlines Flight Attendants currently on furlough.