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2.27.04 – (LAA) – Haiti Cancellations, National Runoff Election, Vacation Accrual Presidential Grievance, Furloughed FAs, BOD Convention

Hello. Today is Friday, February 27, 2004. This is George Price, APFA National Communications Coordinator, with the APFA Hotline.

In this week’s Hotline, we will discuss:

  • Haiti cancellations
  • The APFA National Officer Runoff Election
  • A Presidential Grievance filed this week on Vacation Accrual
  • Assistance needed from furloughed Flight Attendants
  • The Annual APFA Board of Directors Convention
  • E-mail addresses
  • Unemployment Insurance extension
  • Industry news

The APFA, APA, SOC, and Corporate Security have been working together to monitor the situation in Haiti. The decision has been made to halt all service into and out of Port-au-Prince through March 2. On Monday, March 1, a meeting will be held to study the situation and a decision will be made at that time as to whether service will resume on March 3.

If you have been affected by cancelled trips to Haiti, you will need to review language in Article I.9 of the contract. If your trip cancels and it is NOT your last trip of the month, you should follow the language in Article I.9.P.2 regarding misconnections, illegalities, and cancellations at sequence origination other than the last trip of the month. If your trip cancels and it IS your last trip of the month, you should follow language in Article I.9.P.6 regarding misconnection, illegalities, and cancellations for trips in the last five days of the contractual month.

Have you voted yet? If not, remember that ballots for the APFA National Officer runoff election are due by 0900 Central Time on March 10th. If you have not received a ballot, please call the APFA National Ballot Committee at 1-800-395-2732, Extension 8311 to request a duplicate. When leaving your request, please be sure to speak slowly and include your name, base, employee number, and your current mailing address. The APFA continues to receive calls from members who are interested in accessing the taped version of the debate held last week between the two candidates for APFA President. The debate was not an APFA sponsored event. The APFA has been informed that members may access the debate through each of the candidates’ web sites. Exercise your right to vote in the APFA runoff election and encourage your flying partners to do the same!

This week, APFA President John Ward, filed a Presidential Grievance on the issue of Vacation Accrual for Flight Attendants who have advanced from one accrual step to another. The grievance was filed in response to the Company’s refusal to provide Flight Attendants with the increased vacation accrual to which they are entitled by virtue of their length of service with American. The complete text of the grievance can be found on the opening page of the APFA Web site. As more information becomes available on this grievance, we will report it on the hotline and web site.

In Washington this week, an amendment to the Gun Liability Bill, which would have extended Unemployment Insurance Benefits from December 30, 2003, until June 30, 2004, was voted on by the Senate. Unfortunately, the amendment only received 58 of the 60 votes needed for passage. Many of the senators APFA has spoken with on Unemployment Insurance Benefits extensions voted in favor of this amendment. We plan to post the vote on this amendment on the APFA Web site on the opening page and Furlough page so that those on furlough can see how senators voted on this very important amendment.

Despite the vote on the amendment, APFA will continue to vigorously pursue legislation that would extend Unemployment Insurance Benefits. As part of our ongoing campaign to promote such legislation, APFA is reaching out to furloughed Flight Attendants for assistance. We must put a face on this issue. Members of Congress we have spoken with asked that we collect narratives from Flight Attendants that have been furloughed and who have exhausted their Unemployment Insurance Benefits.

They should be addressed to “Dear Members of Congress,” and should include the following information:

  • The furloughed Flight Attendant’s name and address
  • A detailed overview of their furlough experience
  • What sacrifices they have made in order to make ends meet
  • How many weeks of UI Benefits they were provided
  • If they have in fact exhausted their UI Benefits
  • How they would benefit from an extension of UI Benefits

The narratives should be very specific and do not have to be long. In order to get this information to members of Congress as part of our campaign, we will need the narratives quickly. If you plan to participate, please forward your contribution to George Price via e-mail at, by fax at 817-540-2077, or by mail to Communications Department, 1004 West Euless Blvd., Euless, TX 76040. Meanwhile, furloughed Flight Attendants should contact the White House and their U.S. Senators and Representative to urge their support for any legislation that would extend Unemployment Compensation Benefits. Contact information for members of Congress can be found easily using Capwiz on the Government Affairs page of the APFA Web site.

From the APFA Safety Department: American Airlines Flight Service has placed a survey on the Flight Service Web site in an effort to identify sections of the In-Flight Manual that may be published on-line rather than printed in the manual. This is our chance to weigh in on the content of the In-Flight Manual, so please take a moment to complete the survey.

Ever wondered just how the governing body of your union conducts business? Well, your chance to witness firsthand the APFA Board of Directors at work will come the week of March 1-5 in Boston, Massachusetts. The Annual APFA Board of Directors Convention will be held at the Omni Parker House Hotel, our long layover hotel, at 60 School Street. The meetings will begin at 1000 each day. Members in good standing are welcomed and encouraged to attend all open portions of the meeting.

Many APFA members have recently changed their e-mail addresses as a result of a change in their Internet Service Providers. If you have made a change to your e-mail address in the past few months, please be sure to update it with the APFA Membership Department at and also by completing the Membership Registration form under Members Only on the APFA Web site. Please remember that you must be dues/fees current to access the Members Only sections of the APFA Web site.

In Industry News:

American announced this week that it would beef up its schedule between New York and the West Coast, the Caribbean, and Florida this spring. The airline plans to increase flights between New York and San Francisco, Seattle, Caracas, Santo Domingo, and Santiago, Dominican Republic. It will reinstate flights between New York and Kingston. American will also increase flights between LaGuardia and St. Louis, Orlando, and Miami.

By the end of February, American will have consolidated its operations in St. Louis to Concourse C. The airline plans to operate all jets and RJs out of Concourse C and turboprops out of Concourse B.

The Transport Workers Union and American Eagle have jointly applied for mediation in contract negotiations for the airline’s dispatchers. Talks began in September 2002, and although there has been some progress, the two parties felt the National Mediation Board could help resolve the outstanding issues.

An Associated Press story published this week reports that airlines are increasingly outsourcing jobs overseas. Delta opened a call center in India last year, which employs nearly 1,000 people. Travelocity plans to export 300 jobs to India next year. This week, United said it would outsource nearly 200 jobs when it opens a call center in Nova Scotia next month, which is part of deal worked out through bankruptcy proceedings.

That is it for the edition of the APFA Hotline. Please visit the APFA Web site at for the latest information, airline industry news, rumor control, and past editions of the Hotline.

There are 5,760 American Airlines Flight Attendants currently on furlough.

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