Representing the Flight Attendants
of American Airlines

Representing the Flight Attendants of American Airlines

3.21.03

This is APFA President John Ward with a Hotline update for Friday, March 21.

Discussions between APFA and American Airlines Management continued every day this week as APFA works toward reaching an agreement with Management aimed at providing financial relief to the Company. Members of the APFA Negotiating Committee, along with our economic and legal advisors, will continue to meet throughout the weekend and next week as well. Any agreement reached between APFA and the Company must first be reviewed by the APFA Executive Committee and Board of Directors and, if approved, is conditioned upon membership ratification.

The membership has provided valuable input to the Negotiating Committee thru the web site and the many e-mails and voicemails to APFA. In addition, the APFA National Officers, Board of Directors and Coordinators have all been instrumental in helping to craft APFA’s response to the present situation.

Please do not allow the rumor mill and those whose sole purpose is to create disunity allow this situation to become any worse than it already is. The APFA will continue to act with the best interests of the majority of the membership in mind.

Please continue to call this hotline for the latest information. Please stay on the line for the remainder of this week’s message.

This is Jeff Bott APFA Vice President with the APFA Hotline. Today is Friday, March 21, 2003

Yesterday, the final signature was placed on our 777 Atlantic staffing award. I am very pleased to announce that the APFA has won the largest and most expensive case the union has undertaken outside the ’93 Interest Arbitration.

In brief, Arbitrator Bonnie Weinstock and the majority of the Board found that the Company violated our Collective Bargaining Agreement in that it imposed an unreasonable workload when it removed the #12 Flight Attendant from the 777 Atlantic aircraft on our European and South American routes.

The Board further ordered the Company to pay understaffing pay per the Contract at $10 per hour to every Flight Attendant for every our flown on the 777 Atlantic on our European and South American routes from April 1, 2002, forward until the #12 is restored or the service is reduced to ensure a reasonable workload. Thus, the award emphasized that there is a benchmark, along with a check and balance established between our staffing and service level. While the Company may reduce service, at any point in time should it restore elements it must add flight attendants on the 777 Atlantic on European and South American routes.

Additionally, in the award the majority of the Board finds that crew rest is an essential element in a flight attendant’s ability to perform the job safely and effectively, especially on long flights. Both parties appreciate the importance of a Flight Attendant being sufficiently refreshed during a long flight to be able to handle any emergencies that might arise during the flight or on landing.

This victory for the APFA was achieved through the monumental efforts and teamwork of many working within my department, and I am very proud and grateful to those who put in many, many hours of preparation, data collection, and analysis that went into winning this case.

I will highlight the award in my next Skyword article.


Hello. Today is Friday, March 21, 2003. This is George Price, APFA National Communications Coordinator, with the APFA Hotline.

With the war in Iraq now underway, the APFA Safety Department urges all Flight Attendants to access all available safety and security information prior to each trip. This includes information in HI6 messages and information contained on the SSI web site accessible only through the Flight Service Web site. Please consult with the Captain prior to each leg of your trip for any updates.

Homeland Security has placed the nation at a threat level “orange” or HIGH. However, be advised that aviation threat levels, including red or SEVERE, may vary by airport, region or flight. This in-turn may mean that security procedures implemented by the TSA will also vary by airport, region or flight based on particular intelligence. Remain flexible and allow yourself extra time to accommodate for changes in security procedures. It is important to note that the aviation threat level will not automatically be raised to red. Intelligence updates or procedural changes will be provided via HI6 messages, the SSI Web site, and/or RF 7700U SEC.

The APFA Safety Department would like to remind all Flight Attendants that the FAA has stepped up their presence in every aspect of American’s operation. Cabin Safety Inspections will be increased. This is often the case when a carrier faces financial difficulties. Please comply with all security and safety procedures. Always carry an up-to-date In-flight Manual, as well as all required equipment including jetbridge keys and a working flashlight. The FAA can impose personal fines on Flight Attendants for non-compliance.

The Company has notified the APFA Hotel Department that beginning Wednesday, March 19, 2003, all layovers in Europe will be moved to airport locations for an undetermined period of time. This was done for security reasons. Neither the APFA nor the APA has reviewed any of the properties crews are being moved to. A complete list of the new hotels can be found on the APFA Web site “Hotel” page.

On Wednesday, Don Carty sent a letter to APFA President John Ward and the heads of the APA and TWU pledging that management would share sacrifices being made throughout the Company by “agreeing to even greater reductions in compensation than we’ve already taken.” Mr. Carty said “the specific reductions to my pay and benefits and those of my officer team will be announced and made public prior to any membership ratification vote and prior to changes affecting agent, management, and support staff.” The APFA has requested for some time that management provide details regarding announced changes to management compensation. The letter from Don Carty can be viewed in its entirety on the APFA Web site.

The APFA Board of Directors passed resolution 1a during a teleconference this week. This resolution provides a mechanism for expedited membership voting on any agreement reached between the APFA and American Airlines as that may be necessary to best protect the interests of the membership under the circumstances presented. The text of this resolution can be found on the APFA Web site.

The APFA Health Department has put up a great deal of information on the APFA Web site regarding Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, an atypical pneumonia of unknown origin. Confirmed cases have been reported in Canada, China, Hong Kong, and other areas of Southeast Asia. The World Health Organization (WHO) has issued a travel advisory for that region, and has deemed this illness a worldwide threat. Airline crews should be aware of the symptoms, which are high fever, cough, shortness of breath, and difficulty breathing. The illness is believed to be passed through close personal contact with an infected individual.

There have been changes made to the April Master Bidsheet for the bases of BOSI, DCAI, IDF, IMA, JFK, and IOR. In addition, there will be fall-offs from IMA to MIA and from BOSI to BOS for the month. Changes can be viewed in the following RF files RF 2029 NBR for International and RF 2028 NBR for Domestic. In addition, the company will make changes available in Flight Service Operations. All bids will now close at 0001 March 24th.

This week APFA asked Flight Attendants to contact their members of Congress to request immediate relief from the numerous taxes, fees, and costs associated with security enhancements imposed on carriers since September 11, 2001. The financial difficulty the industry is experiencing at this point is due in large part to the fees, taxes, and expense of security.

The time for Congress to act is NOW. APFA has prepared a message to Congress, which has been placed in Capwiz, APFA’s legislative service located on the APFA Web site at www.www.apfa.org. Flight Attendants should access the web site and then click on the “APFA Capwiz Action Alert” icon on the opening page. Once they have accessed the site, members will simply enter their Zip Code and complete the necessary fields and submit. This will send APFA’s message on their behalf to their respective members of Congress.

APFA sent out the first “APFA Action Alert” to all members who have registered their e-mail addresses through the APFA Web site. This e-mail explained what APFA is asking them to do and the reasons. If you did not receive this e-mail, please go to the APFA Web site “APFA Membership & Registration” page and update your e-mail address. Be sure that a black check mark is in the box next to the sentence that says Yes! Please notify me by e-mail of special events! This will ensure that you are on the APFA mass e-mail list. All members should register they e-mails with the Membership Department at Membership@apfa.org and through the APFA Membership & Registration page of the web site.

Due to heightened security measures in Washington, D.C., and the possibility that access to congressional offices may be restricted on short notice, APFA’s planned lobby event in Washington, D.C., for March 25th and 26th has been cancelled.

The SFO and SFO-I bases are invited to join members of AFA in an airport rally at the SFO United Domestic Terminal on Monday, March 24, 2003, from 1000 until 1300. The purpose of this rally is to heighten the flying public’s awareness for the need for financial relief from Congress for the ailing airline industry. The dress is full uniform. More information on this event can be found on the SFO and SFO-I base pages on the APFA Web site.

The Missouri Division of Workforce Development will hold a Rapid Response meeting in STL at the TWA Training Center on Thursday, March 27th at 1000 and 1400. For more information on this meeting, please visit the “Reduction in Force” or “STL Base” pages of the APFA Web site.

For information on the airline industry and American specifically, please visit the “Aviation Industry News” page of the APFA Web site.

That is it for this edition of the APFA Hotline. Please visit the web site and call the hotline frequently for updates.

Remember, there are currently 2,396 American Airlines Flight Attendants on furlough.

 

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