This is APFA Vice President Brett Durkin with a Hotline message for Friday, February 18, 2005.
I felt it was important to let all of you know about our Annual Convention this year. The Board of Director’s convention is set for March 14th through the 18th at the Embassy Suites Hotel, Chicago Downtown Lakefront. On Monday, March 14th while the Board is in session, APFA will hold a number of workshops for all members in good standing that wish to attend.
The Communications, Health, Safety and Hotel Departments will have representatives available to answer your questions and conduct informal discussions. Workshops will be offered concerning retirement benefits and scheduling and contract issues. There will also be representatives from the Legislative Task Force in attendance. The schedule of training sessions is as follows:
Retirement sessions including information on retiree health, travel and pension benefits will be held from 0900 to 1030 and 1300 to 1430. Please know your JETNET password and bring your copy of the Retirement Made Easy booklet from the 3rd quarter 2004 Skyword. If you do not have a copy of this booklet, you can download it from the retirement section of the APFA website. At the conclusion of the presentation, APFA specialists Jill Frank and Patrick Hancock will be available to take you into JETNET and work with individual profiles as long as time permits.
Scheduling coordinator Jaimie McNeice and Contract Coordinator Brent Peterson will also be conducting sessions designed to increase your familiarity with the new On Duty Contract Guide. These sessions are scheduled for 1045 until 1215 and 1445 until 1615. Please bring your copy of the Guide, which was included in the 4th quarter 2004 Skyword. If you do not have a copy it is available from the Skyword page of the APFA website. You can download a copy to bring with you.
In an effort to plan classroom space and accommodate all interested APFA Members, we ask that you call Linda Plunk at 817-540-0108, ext. 8200 and indicate which sessions you wish to attend.
Also, don’t forget to bid for vacation. The primary vacation bidding period will close at 0800 Central Standard Time on March 7. Results will be posted by 1700 on March 14. The Secondary vacation bidding period will open on March 15 and close at 0800 Central Standard Time on March 23. Information regarding vacation accrual can be found in the On-Duty Contract Guide on page 32.
Thanks for calling the APFA weekly hotline. Now please stay on the line for the rest of the hotline. Leslie…
This is Leslie Mayo, APFA National Communications Coordinator with the remainder of the hotline for Friday, February 17, 2005.
Please keep our 4,268 furloughed flight attendants and our 20 members serving full-time in the armed forces in your thoughts.
APFA and the Company have come to an agreement on the newly reconfigured Super-80’s and the Flight Attendant storage – or the lack thereof – on these aircraft. So far the parties have agreed that one secure area for flight attendant storage will be provided. We are still in discussions regarding another locked Flight Attendant storage space in this reconfigured aircraft.
From the Safety Department: On February 8, 2005, members of the APFA Safety Department met with members of management from both the Flight and Safety Departments to review the changes American has made in response to the National Transportation Board’s final report on American Airlines flight 587. All of the agenda items were issues brought forth by the National Transportation Board. This agenda included mostly training topics; the A300 rudder-control system, American’s Advanced Maneuvering Program and Simulator training. And, as a result of this accident and post accident investigation, pilots, industry wide, are being given new guidance on what control inputs can be made to an aircraft at certain speeds without inflicting structural damage to the airplane.
APFA is pleased with the changes American has made and is satisfied that we have fully represented our membership in the post accident follow-up with American. Please feel free to contact the Safety Department if you have any questions regarding the flight 587 accident or any other safety related issue you have.
On Wednesday, February 16, The American Spirit Award was presented to DCA based Flight Attendants Cindy Zappone, Debbie O’Connor and Panda Kisela for their efforts in saving the life of the First Officer on their November 9, 2004, flight. A ceremony was held at Dulles International Airport and the Flight Attendants were presented with a crystal award, a letter signed by Veronica Lopes, Managing Director of AA Flight Service Operations, and APFA National Safety Coordinator Lonny Glover. APFA also presented the Flight Attendants with “Certificates of Honor”
The Scheduling Department would like to remind ORD based Flight Attendants that MSP satellite sequences are designated on the bidsheet with the letter “P.” Please be careful when block bidding or using a bidding program that you do not bid a MSP sequence by mistake. When searching open time for availability plotting, trip trade with open time, etc., please use the N4D/ORD//Date entry as it will clearly display that the sequence originates and terminates in MSP. You cannot distinguish an ORD sequence from a MSP using the N3D or N4TL entry. Spread the word to your fellow ORD based Flight Attendants to use the N4D entry to avoid accidentally picking up a MSP sequence.
At the recent APFA/AA Joint Scheduling Committee meeting, an agreement was reached to purge the domestic transfer list. This was due in large part to feedback from our membership. The domestic transfer list was purged on February 14, 2005. If you still desire a domestic transfer please re-enter your transfer preference. Please enter a transfer preference only if you are willing to accept the transfer. This will help your fellow Flight Attendants, who are junior to you with a better opportunity to have their transfer requests honored.
From the Hotel Department: The New York long layover hotel has a new owner who has increased the rate by $36.00 per person per night and has set a room cap of 50 rooms per night. This measure has forced long layover cut off times to be increased to 15 hours. Any layover shorter in length than15 hours will be housed at the LGA or JFK airport locations. Since bidsheets have already come out with hotel allocations please make sure to check the layover time to determine your proper layover hotel. A hotel review will be performed in the near future to determine our options.
If you should lose your Company ID while on a layover the agent will not allow you onboard the aircraft. You will need to contact your base MOD, and have him or her e-mail or fax an authorization to the station to allow you to fly the rest of your sequence.
APFA has recently had a high volume of calls concerning sick clearance procedures. Please keep the following in mind: you must clear through AA Medical if your illness involves any type of hospital stay, surgery, or your absence was 30 days or longer. If your self-clearance capability has not been withdrawn and you clear through AVRS, do not be surprised if AA Medical pulls you from the line, until receiving medical documentation.
As a workgroup, we have experienced many problems with the current Flight Attendant job description and essential functions when it comes to functional capacity evaluations. On March 2, the APFA Health Department will be meeting with American Airlines to review a new F/A-friendly job description and essential functions. Once finalized, it will be published on the APFA website.
In industry news, Aloha Airlines and the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) last week announced the ratification of a new contract that becomes amendable on Jan. 1, 2007. The AFA bargaining unit represents 444 Aloha flight attendants. The two parties have agreed not to release details of the new contract at this point.
United this week announced the recall of 150 pilots, 75 in the spring and another 75 later in the year, to cover its flying schedule for the rest of the year in order to offset anticipated pilot retirements. Currently there are about 2,100 pilots on furlough. The Department of Transportation said last week that United had the sixth-best on-time record among U.S. carriers in 2004 but was tops among the network carriers in punctuality, with a better-than-average 79.7 percent of its flights on time. The top five were Hawaiian Airlines, SkyWest, JetBlue, Southwest and ATA.
The office will be closed in observance of President’s Day on Monday the 21st and will reopen at 9:00 a.m on Tuesday.
Thank you for calling the APFA Hotline.