Good evening, this is Tommie Hutto-Blake, APFA President with the APFA HotLine for Friday, September 3, 2004.
First off – our thoughts today are with those of you on the Florida Coast as you do everything possible to stay out of harm’s way while Mother Nature gives our industry and your communities some serious challenges. If you need us please let both the Company and your Union hear about how we can assist you.
Now, I would like to both share events of this past week and talk about some future goals. On Thursday, I met with Gerard Arpey, Lauri Curtis and other members of senior management to discuss a number of important issues to our membership. I listened to management’s assessment of our company’s strengths and weaknesses and we opened dialogue on many different issues that are important to the Flight Attendants and the Company.
The first agreement we reached was that management will honor their contractual obligation to provide a printed copy of our wages, work rules, and benefits as found in the Concessionary Contract of April 2003. We will keep you up to date on when you can expect a complete contract to be distributed ASAP!
Second, the Buy on Board TEST that began this week was discussed at length stating the Union’s position that this is both a staffing issue and an additional workload for our members. I note APFA already has active understaffing issues under dispute with regard to the 737 staff cuts. On board staffing is a huge issue to a union with 5500+ Flight Attendants on furlough.
The parties agreed on Thursday to survey each and every Flight Attendant working one of these buy-on-board TEST flights. If you work one of these flights I urge you to fill out the survey. APFA and management will be reviewing this information thoroughly.
We know the company’s focus is to generate new revenue. Our focus is to protect our members workload and wages. As we study this new buy on board issue in our industry – we must also study revenue sharing programs that other airlines have installed.
Finally, if you work one of the TEST flights during the next 12 days and feel you are understaffed due to an increased workload – please file an understaffing claim and notice your Base Chair via voice mail, email or by providing a copy in the APFA lock box in operations. Please assist us as the Company maneuvers its way through this new on board revenue TEST.
Another item discussed this week with Flight Service and Employee Relations was their current plan to install a new attendance control policy by October 1st. Until this week, the Union had offered no input to these changes. After lengthy discussions with the Company the start up date will be delayed and a union and management team will be meeting next week in ORD to allow the union’s input for proffered revisions to this program BEFORE this program impacts our members. As a union we need to be proactive – on the front side of issues – rather than waiting until it’s too late, reacting after matters have been taken out of our control. Again, we will keep you updated on the progress of AFPA’s input on the company’s Attendance Policy revisions.
Now, please stay on the line for more important information about APFA matters both current and future. Leslie. . .
This is Leslie Mayo for APFA Communications with the APFA Hotline. Today is Friday, September 3, 2004.
As Hurricane Frances approaches and US landfall is expected shortly, flights are being evaluated and cancelled according to current conditions. Please be sure to check your schedules to confirm operation of your trip.
Due to staffing issues resulting from the hurricane, APFA and the Company have signed a letter of agreement that allows for the temporary use of volunteer International Flight Attendants for Domestic flying once all Domestic Make-Up and Option II flying has been processed. This will only be valid for a period of time not to exceed eight (8) days. Again, this is strictly voluntary and will be available to International Flight Attendants only after Domestic Make-Up and Option II flying has been processed. A copy of the letter is available on the APFA Web site at www.www.apfa.org.
Those Flight Attendants whose trips are cancelled due to the hurricane should be familiar with MIC procedures. In order to protect your guarantee, you MUST call Crew Schedule upon learning your trip has been cancelled. Crew Schedule then has several options: 1 – they can deadhead you to cover your return flight; 2 – they can assign you airport stand-by duty for no more than four hours; 3 – they can reschedule you to another trip; 4 – they can hold you available on days you were originally scheduled to fly; or 5 – everybody’s favorite – they can release you. If after your cancellation your pay projection is at or above your guarantee you have no further obligation.
If you are RELEASED, and you wish to protect your guarantee, you must give “Comp Days” (CD), which are similar to being on Availability on your days off equal to the number of days of the misconnect/illegality/cancellation later in the month. If you have any questions, please call the APFA Scheduling Department. Also, be sure to review the specific language in Art. 9. P and App. I. Art. 9.P. (pages 121-124 and 484-487).
As we announced on Wednesday, thanks to your reports and phone calls to both APFA and the Company, we have been able to secure a downtown location for all long layovers in Paris. Effective October 1, 2004, crews will be relocating to a four-star hotel in the 14th Arondisement near the Latin Quarter in Montparnasse. We want to particularly thank you, the membership for your involvement in getting this downtown hotel. Many APFA representatives worked tirelessly to make this happen and we thank them, as well. Specific details can be found on the APFA website.
On August 31, 2004, flight 2932 from St. Louis to Dallas operated as the final flight under the TWA-LLC certificate. The actual certificate will be transported to Washington, D.C., for its official retirement. This completes TWA’s transition into the American Airlines operation.
Just a quick reminder regarding the National Coordinator summit to be held at APFA Headquarters next Wednesday and Thursday… This summit is being conducted to give all APFA members the opportunity to express their interest in the following Departments: Contract, Layover Hotels, Scheduling, Safety and Health. The Hotel summit will begin promptly at 1:00 p.m. on TUESDAY, September 7, 2004. The Scheduling and Contract summit will begin at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, September 8th, and the Safety and Health summit will begin at 2:00 p.m. Wednesday afternoon. To date, we have received 14 faxes and look forward to meeting all of you next week.
Today, APFA representatives including President Tommie Hutto-Blake were informational picketing in support of the American Eagle flight attendants’ 40-month long effort to reach a contract with AMR.
Tommie’s letter to the membership will be posted on the APFA Web site on Labor Day. It will be mailed to each of your homes as well, along with your new APFA membership card. Under the APFA Constitution, this card is required to be sent to all members every four years.
As a reminder, we wish to inform everyone that the enrollment period for the APFA Voluntary Optional Insurance Benefits has been extended to September 17, 2004. Please refer all questions to the Benefits Call Center at 888-219-9459. Our Health Reps at APFA Headquarters are not equipped to provide you with information regarding APFA Voluntary Optional Insurance.
APFA Headquarters will be closed on Monday, September 6th in observance of Labor Day. We wish you a safe and happy weekend and thank you for calling the APFA HotLine.