Hello, this is Denise Pointer with an InfoRep hotline message for Tuesday, November 22, 2005.
Twelve years ago on November 18th, the APFA Flight Attendants joined together to fight for what we believed in. The Strike of ’93 was proof that when we join forces, we can accomplish anything.
Last week, the U.S. Senate voted to pass the Senate’s pension bill. A portion of the Isakson amendment include provisions that provide for longer amortization periods and more favorable interest rates that don’t require companies to freeze their defined benefit plans. Many people worked very hard on making this bill a reality. To all of you who wrote letters to your senators, please accept our sincere thanks. Your efforts paid off.
Please consider participating in the APFA Political Action Committee (PAC) program. Our PAC funds are strictly voluntary and are deducted automatically from your paycheck. During our most recent base visits, we have been asking flight attendants to consider giving $ .50 cents, $1.00 or whatever you feel comfortable giving per paycheck to the fund. This money is used to support politicians in Washington D.C., who vote for issues that support the Flight Attendant career, i.e. the Pension Bill. PAC funds are critical to helping us on the Hill. If you would like to contribute, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org, or you may sign up at www.www.apfa.org.
To say that things are uncertain in our industry right now is putting it mildly. Some of the news these past few weeks: Delta reported a $1.1B loss for the 3Q ’05. Northwest Pilots agreed to a tentative interim 24% pay cut which includes the elimination of international rates of pay and incentive pay for hours over 80. And Northwest has reported that they intend to outsource 5,000 baggage handlers, customer service and ground worker jobs.
As you know, Northwest Airlines is proposing the outsourcing of literally thousands of Flight Attendant jobs to non-U.S. citizens. Please go to www.www.apfa.org and click on the link "No More Outsourcing". Tell our lawmakers how you feel about sending U.S. jobs to other countries. APFA has prepared a letter you can automatically forward to your Senators and Congressmen via Cap Wiz. All you need to do is fill in your name, address and zip code.
Congressional negotiators agreed last week to exempt Missouri from the Wright Amendment restrictions on air service between Dallas Love Field and several states. Sen. Christopher Bond, a Missouri Republican, sponsored the exemption.
I am sure many of you were aware that Gerard Arpey testified in front of the Senate Commerce subcommittee on aviation. Southwest’s chairman, Herb Kelleher as well as several others also testified. Mr. Arpey told the committee that AA would have to scale back operations at DFW and shift some service to Love Field in order to remain competitive if the Wright Amendment were repealed.
Southwest Founder Herb Kelleher said lifting the statute would open Love Field — and Dallas — to more competition. "DFW has gotten so big I’m surprised its not been implicated in a steroid scandal," Kelleher said at the hearing. That comment was not very well received by the attendees.
Arpey stated, "This is eating up time, money and energy we would like to devote to running our business," Arpey said. More information about this hearing, as well as a copy of Mr. Arpey’s testimony, can be found on Jetnet.
APFA will continue to keep you updated as things progress with this issue. Please stay informed on what is happening with the Wright Amendment, write letters to your Senators and your representatives in Congress, and encourage everyone you fly with to do the same.
Rick Musica and I just finished our New York base visits this week and will be wrapping up our system wide tour with MIA on November 28-29, RDU in the afternoon of the 29th and DCA on the 30th.
APFA’s Safety department has asked that I emphasize information that was sent out in a recent HI6 message. There has been a recent increase in criminal activity affecting crewmembers on layovers in EZE. These incidents have included street muggings as well as targeting crewmembers at nightclubs. The nightclub events have involved suspicions that beverages may have been tampered with, followed by crewmembers being assaulted and robbed. Please carefully evaluate any decision you make to frequent local entertainment establishments.
American has recently announced that layovers will resume in New Orleans effective December 15, 2005. Our new short layover hotel is the Hilton New Orleans at the airport. Our new long layover property in downtown New Orleans is the W. No, that’s not a typo – the W.
I would like to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving! Thanks for all you do for the InfoRep program.
Denise Pointer, DFW InfoRep
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