This is Leslie Mayo, National Communications Coordinator, with the APFA Hotline for Friday, March 9, 2007.
Last week on the Hotline, APFA once again addressed the Executive Bonuses set for an April 18th “strike price date” with an issuance date of April 19th. In other words, April 19th is when the Performance Share Plan (PSP) stock units are actually awarded to the 800+ “elite” members of senior management. It is important that no member confuses the term “strike date” for stock awarded to these Executives with any type of job action against American Airlines. APFA in no way advocates or supports any job action by our members at this time. Any job action must be authorized by the Union and lawful under the railway labor act. In the coming weeks you will be asked to take part in very public and lawful activities led by APFA to express our outrage over the amount of money being awarded to only a few as a result of the hard work of all of us. Stay tuned to the Hotline, the APFA Web site and your mailbox at home for a number of ways you can get involved in protesting the PSP stock bonuses next month. If you have not updated your most recent mailing address with APFA, please send an email as soon as possible to email@example.com including your full name, address, employee number and phone number.
We have uploaded another poll question at www.www.apfa.org regarding the Executive Bonus payouts scheduled for next month. Please visit the Web site and register your response. Last week’s poll question will remain available for a while longer due to the overwhelming response. That way, as many members as possible – who have not yet gotten a chance to choose how YOU would choose to spend $200 million of AMR stock – will be able to do so. To date, almost 7,000 responses have been recorded.
The fourth APFA Membership Online Survey will begin on Monday, March 12th and will run for several weeks. It can be accessed only through our Union’s Web site at www.www.apfa.org. The original start date for this survey was scheduled for March 8th; however, the University of North Texas Survey Research Center experienced a delay in finalizing the survey. The APFA leadership requests your honest input to help formulate the position of our Union and its members within the industry, on Capitol Hill, and at the Bargaining Table in 2008. Individual survey results will remain confidential and only percentages of each response will be made available to the APFA Leadership.
Daylight Savings Time begins Sunday, March 11th at 0200. APFA encourages all Reserve and AVBL FAs to be aware of the impact this has on Duty Free Periods (DFP) scheduled for March 11th. As a result of Daylight Savings Time March 11th will consist of 23 hours. Our Duty Free Periods are always measured in 24 hour increments. Therefore, you will notice that your HI1 shows that the DFP actually concludes at 0100 on the 12th. Each year, some FAs misread their schedule and believe they have the entire day off. You will see the same effect on any subsequent DFPs that run consecutively with the 11th. Currently the company is adjusting some schedules that did not properly reflect Daylight Savings Time. Please review your HI1 very carefully and refer to the bidsheet for your exact days off if you have any doubt.
From the APFA Contract Department: If you are interested in becoming 737, 757 or 777-qualified you can avoid an additional trip to DFW by picking up the qualification while attending annual Recurrent Training. If you prefer not to wait for your Recurrent Training month you can train on any day that Recurrent Training is offered. Last year, more than 1,000 FAs took advantage of these options. To submit your ballot or for more information, go to the AA Flight Service Training Home Page. Details can also be found on your bidsheet. Training pay per Art.3.H.2. is applicable.
From the Scheduling Department: The On-Duty Contract Guide should be carried while on-duty by every Flight Attendant. The majority of questions that arise in the daily operation can be answered quickly using this tool. If you have misplaced your copy, you may download a new one at www.www.apfa.org.
If you are flying and suspect that your maximum duty-day or your monthly maximum is being violated, contact Crew Tracking immediately to verify and assert your contractual rights. If Tracking does not assist you in correcting the problem, ask APFA to step in by calling your local Base Representative or the APFA Scheduling Desk at 817.540.0108, ext. 8161.
From the APFA Safety and Security Department: After months of research and discussion with the Company, beginning March 15th non-latex gloves will be provisioned in the Flight Attendant Service Kit. These gloves are designed for FA use when cleaning on C-Bill through-flights or replenishing lav supplies on longer flights. We are pleased that Flight Service and AA have agreed to provide this necessary piece of equipment to protect Flight Attendants.
Also, AA has announced they will be purchasing 19,000 new service carts. The carts will be phased in to replace the old blue Lermer carts. The new carts will be lighter and easier to handle. Hopefully this will help reduce the amount of injuries our FAs face when operating the older carts.
From the APFA Health Department: APFA has been notified that the Adventist Health System contract was terminated as of March 1, 2007, due to a break down in talks between United Health Care (UHC) and the Adventist Health System in the Chicago area. This means that as of March 1, 2007, the following medical facilities will no longer participate in United Healthcare’s network. Hinsdale Hospital, Glen Oaks Medical Center, and LaGrange Hospital. There are also physicians who have left the network as a result of this change. Within the past week, UHC sent letters to 195 AA employees who had used these three facilities in the past few months. The letter was to notify employees of the loss of network coverage for these facilities. Anyone who is receiving care at one of these facilities for a serious illness or pregnancy MAY be eligible for in-network continuing care at your facility. Check with UHC to see if you qualify. APFA recommends that you call UHC to confirm whether your doctor and/or facility is still in-network before seeing your healthcare provider. This recommendation applies to all employees, whether you have used the Adventist Healthcare system or not. On a side note, the membership opinion survey set for publishing on Monday contains some questions on our Healthcare benefits administered by UHC.
The APFA Base election results were announced on this Hotline last evening. Please stay on the line once this message completes to hear the results read by the Chairperson of the National Ballot Committee. Since no Willingness-To-Serves were received at the base of SFO-I, the Executive Committee appointed the current SFO-I Chair Arlene LeWinter to the position of Interim Base Chairperson at SFO-I until such time that another round of Willingness-To-Serve notifications is sent to the SFO-I Flight Attendants.
Industry News: The U.S. reached a tentative “Open Skies” Agreement last Friday with the European Union (EU) and the United Kingdom (UK) that will not only allows greater frequency of flying from the U.S. to European cities, but would also allow greater foreign ownership of U.S. air carriers. The Department of Transportation issued a proposed rule last fall allowing greater foreign ownership but an outspoken Congress convinced DOT not to move forward. Now, the Bush Administration is trying another approach by signing this tentative agreement which will be finalized over the coming months. Congress must authorize the signing of the final agreement. The provisions of this tentative accord are of great concern to all labor representatives in the airline industry — particularly since no labor representative sits at the Open Skies bargaining table. Members of Congress are studying the ambiguous language and legislation is expected soon that will prevent the Bush Administration from moving towards allowing greater foreign ownership. Subsequent provisions to the Open Skies agreement are expected over the coming months that would grant cabotage rights allowing foreign carriers to fly point to point within the U.S. This tentative agreement is a severe threat to the U.S. aviation industry as we know it. The APFA will post letters on our website opposing this agreement as soon as legislation is introduced. Please act promptly to send your letter to your member of Congress.
Fuel Watch: As of March 8th, a barrel of crude oil cost $61.64. The crack spread price was $15.60. This brings the total for one barrel of jet fuel to $77.24 – about $1.20 less than last week’s price. One year ago, jet fuel was $78.69 a barrel – nearly the same price as it is today.
On a very somber note, this week we experienced the tragic loss of one of our Flight Attendants while on a layover in Paris. Our sympathy goes out to his family and friends. An HI6 message was issued containing more information.
Please remember that we still have 2,366 Flight Attendants on furlough.
That’s it for this week. Thank you for calling the APFA Hotline.