Hello. Today is Friday, February 7, 2003. This is George Price, APFA National Communications Coordinator with the APFA Hotline.
Today, the three union groups again met with the company, this time with the expectation of learning exactly how the company arrived at the $1.8 billion target number that it is seeking from labor. Unfortunately, this meeting fell short of our expectations as little of the detailed information APFA had requested was provided. As was reported on this hotline on Tuesday, the company has targeted $340 million in annual savings from the Flight Attendants. In a letter to APFA President John Ward, the company did not specify areas of the contract they are targeting for these cost savings. Details of the company’s presentation as provided to the unions is now available on the APFA Web site through the link at the top of the opening page.
The APFA Board of Directors and members of the APFA Negotiating Committee will meet with our analyst and advisors in Washington D.C., on February 11th and 12th to review the analysis of the company’s finances and to discuss the company’s latest request for concessions.
Your APFA leadership is keenly aware of the membership’s need for information. Please be patient. The current situation necessitates that we first conduct due diligence by undertaking a thorough review of the company’s books. Once complete, we will be in a position to determine our course.
The current state of affairs in the airline industry and here at American has understandably created an atmosphere of anxiety among employees. The rumors and speculation that accompany such conditions have added to an already stressful situation. APFA strongly discourages Flight Attendants from playing into the rumor mill. Factual information will be provided to you through the APFA as it becomes available. Again, please be patient.
The volume of calls regarding retirement being received by APFA Representatives has increased in the past several days. Retirement questions should be directed to Headquarters, Extension 8397. In addition, the Retirement page of the web site contains useful information for those either preparing for or considering retirement, links to government agencies, and more. Please take a moment to visit this page.
The APFA has still not received final word from the company on the Overage Leave and Partnership Flying proffer that is to open later this month. Once details have been provided to the APFA, we will update the hotlines and the web site.
From the Safety Department: The United States Government today raised the terrorist threat level to HIGH status. A new security advisory has been added to the SSI web site, which is accessible through the Flight Service web site. All Flight Attendants are encouraged to visit this site for the latest security information. As always, please be aware of your environment whether on the airplane or on layover. Please adhere to standard safety and security precautions at all times. Report any suspicious activity to the Captain, the gate agents, local law enforcement, or hotel security.
In Washington, D.C. this week, an Omnibus Appropriations bill is working its way through Conference Committee. An item was added at the last minute that would make self-defense training for Flight Attendants strictly voluntary. APFA advocates mandatory self-defense training for all Flight Attendants. In an effort to ensure that members of the Conference Committee are aware of our feelings on this issue, we are asking that the following members of Congress be contacted via e-mail, phone, or fax:
Senator Bob Byrd (West Virginia)-D 202-224-3954 202-228-0002 fax Senator Ted Stevens (Alaska)-R 202-224-3004 202-224-2354 fax Senator Richard Shelby (Alabama)-R 202-224-5744 202-224-3416 fax Representative Bill Young (Florida)-R 202-225-5961 202-225-9764 fax Representative David Obey (Wisconsin)-D 202-225-3365 202-225-3240 fax Representative Harold Rogers (Kentucky)-R 202-225-4601 202-225-0940 fax Representative Martin Sabo (Minnesota)-D 202-225-4755 202-225-4886 fax
Time is of the essence. Please take a moment this weekend to send these individuals a message of support for mandatory self-defense training for Flight Attendants. Please contact the web site for more information.
Flight Attendants may now add their name to the volunteer list for CRAF flying by submitting HISEND message form 31. Flight Attendants interested in volunteering for the CRAF operation must meet the following requirements:
-Have current international qualifications -Be qualified on the 777 and the 767 -Be a US citizen -Hold a current valid US Passport -Not currently serving in the US military, Reserves or National Guard -Be able to provide your blood type
CRAF flying in the international operation is staffed with CRAF reserves from the reserve pool. Staffing will be done in strict seniority order. Domestic CRAF flying is filled through the order of open time coverage. Management personnel will only be utilized if insufficient numbers of Flight Attendants volunteer. If and when CRAF flying is activated, the CRAF Reserve pool will be filled from those whose names appear on the systemwide volunteer list
The APFA Web site has a great deal of information on CRAF flying including medical requirements and recommendations. We encourage all interested Flight Attendants to access the information under the “Hot Topics” icon on the web site. The APFA also encourages Flight Attendants to visit the Center for Disease Control web site at www.cdc.gov, the Central Intelligence Agency web site at www.cia.gov, and the International Committee of the Red Cross web site at www.icrc.org for related information.
Ballots for IDF, IOR, BOSI, and LAX Chair and Vice Chair and IMA Vice Chair will be mailed on Saturday, February 8, 2003. Ballots are due by 0900 Central Time on March 11, 2003. Willingness-to-Serves for Ad Hoc Member of the Executive Committee Place #5 are due by 1000 Central Time on February 11, 2003. Questions should be directed to the APFA National Ballot Committee at APFA Headquarters, extension 8311.
The Missouri Division of Work Force Development will sponsor a job fair on February 13, 2003, for American Airlines employees who have been affected by reduction in force. This event will be held at the Holiday Inn Airport-North, 4545 North Lindbergh, Bridgeton, MO 63044. There will be over 60 employers and community agencies in attendance. Please see the Reduction in Force or the STL base page of the APFA Web site for more details.
The January 2003 issue of Skyword listed incorrect contact numbers for two APFA Vice Chairs. The following are the correct contact numbers:
LAX Vice Chair Kristin McCullor 949-646-2361 And JFK Vice Chair Kat Clements 818-991-3944
In Industry News:
American reported January traffic this week. System wide traffic increased 4.9 percent from January 2002 on a capacity increase of 3.2 percent. The system load factor was 67 percent up 1.1 points from a year ago. International traffic was up in January by 11.4 percent from a year ago. This was on a capacity increase of 7.8 percent. Domestic traffic increased 2.3 percent from January 2002 on a capacity increase of 1.4 percent.
United Airlines this week unveiled its plans to create a low-cost carrier, which would be separate and apart from the mainline airline. Union leaders have criticized the plan saying that they would oppose any plans to create such an airline that does not use United employees and remain under the United Airlines umbrella. United management also announced the airline would also rely more on regional jets in the future.
Delta Air Lines officials confirmed they may soon approach their Pilots for concessions. Leo Mullins, CEO of Delta, told analysts this week that he is watching the moves of other airlines as it related to labor costs. In a related story, Delta announced that its chief executive and president will take a 10 percent pay cut, while other executives at the airline will take 8 percent pay cuts in order to lower costs. The cuts are scheduled to go into affect March 1, 2003. Airline officials said there are no plans to cut the wages of non-contract or mid-level workers.
On Monday, Delta said it would begin testing food sales on select flights. Such sales would involve food items ranging in price from $2.00 to $7.00. The tests will be conducted primarily on flights that do not currently have scheduled food service in the main cabin. Delta joins America West in testing food sales.
For more industry news, please visit the Aviation Industry News page of the APFA Web site.
That is it for this week’s hotline. Please visit the web site for the latest information.
Please remember that there are currently 2,396 American Airlines Flight Attendants on furlough.