This is Leslie Mayo, National Communications Coordinator, with the APFA Hotline for Sunday, May 27, 2007.
From the Safety and Hotel Department, this serves as a reminder to all crewmembers whether you are Domestic or International. Each crewmember should be cognizant of the security of your crew luggage at all times. Recently, an incident occurred in Buenos Aires where several bags were stolen from the back of the limo while it was parked in front of the hotel. The driver had walked to the side of the limo to close the door and when he returned, some of the bags were missing. It may be necessary to wait until the back doors are closed and locked before boarding the limo to be sure your bags are secure.
APFAís Hotel Department has received several complaints regarding the LAX short-layover transportation and will be doing everything possible to resolve the situation. Therefore, please fill out a short survey each time you layover at the short layover hotel in LAX. The survey can be found in the MOD Office and will be available for download from the APFA Web site beginning Tuesday. Crewmembers are asked either drop it in an APFA lockbox in Operations or mail it to the address on the survey.
And finally, the Hotel Department would like to ensure that all crewmembers are aware of the required earlier pick up time in Paris. We have been notified that, due to extensive traffic in Paris, pick-up times from the hotel will be ten minutes earlier.
On Tuesday, we will have a letter available for Flight Attendants to fill out and send to your Representatives regarding the FAA Reauthorization Bill. This Bill goes through Congress every four years. There are recurring programs and new programs for the FAA to implement. APFA is working very closely with other FA unions to obtain OSHA coverage for Flight Attendants. Flight Attendants comprise the largest private group and the only predominantly-female group that is not covered under OSHA. We have lobbied for FAs to be covered under OSHA for more than 30 years in order to protect our health and our safety in the workplace. There is a chance that Congress could attach this prospect to the FAA Bill. Please visit www.apfa.org beginning Tuesday and click on Legislation from the main page, then Capwiz to send your letter to Congress. We must urge our Representatives and Senators to support these long-overdue protections.
Industry News: Virgin America will begin operating flights between New York and San Francisco this summer following DOT approval earlier this week. Virgin America struggled with securing approval until the U.S. recently determined that the company satisfies the requirement that VA complies with U.S. law mandating all domestic airlines be controlled by U.S. citizens. Richard Branson’s hand-picked CEO Fred Reid will be required to leave his position in order for the airline to begin operations.
Bankruptcy Watch: The bankruptcy court has approved Northwest AirlinesÇ exit from Chapter 11 planned for May 31. Northwest filed for bankruptcy in September ’05 and is the last airline to emerge from under its protection following years of turmoil in the airline industry following 9/11. Delta Airlines emerged from Chapter 11 last month after 19 months of restructuring.
Q: Please come clean with us and tell us what is going on with no secrets since rumors and galley gossip are out of control. It is your responsibility to communicate all pertinent information to those people who pay your salary. Is it true that we are all receiving $40,000 in retro pay?
A: Thank you for your email and your honest question. There is a very good reason that your Union has not communicated this information to you. That is because, unfortunately, there is no truth to it. Several weeks ago, APFA addressed a rumor that was circulating regarding the supposed settlement of a lawsuit filed following the ’03 Restructuring Agreement that would result in our ’01 Contract being restored for those who were litigants in the lawsuit. The question and answer of the previous rumor control question mentioned above will be repeated here in the hopes that this rumor will die a quick death:
Q: Someone told me recently that our old Contract from 2001 will soon be restored to only those who initiated the lawsuit against APFA back in 2003. Is this true?
A: No. Two active lawsuits against APFA remain in the federal court system stemming from the 2003 restructuring period. These lawsuits are known as the Cooper case and the Marcoux case. Marcoux is in the midst of a court-approved calendar for Dispositive Motions. In plain English, this means that the Court (Judge Nina Gershon in the Eastern District of New York) after reviewing the plaintiffs’ and the defendants’ written arguments – and likely following oral arguments by counsel, will decide either to dismiss all or part of the case, or to schedule any remaining claims in the case for trial. Significant parts of both of these lawsuits have already been dismissed by Judge Gershon. The last of the briefs in Marcoux is scheduled to be filed on June 29, 2007. The portion of the Cooper case that challenged the American/TWA seniority integration was dismissed in its entirety.
We anticipate that Judge Gershon (to whom the Cooper case is also assigned) will approve a schedule for Dispositive Motions soon regarding the remaining claims pertaining to the Restructuring Agreement. APFA has devoted a substantial amount of time, effort and resources on our defense in these lawsuits. We have also kept our members informed through the Hotline, the APFA Web site and Skyword. As soon as we have any decision from Judge Gershon it will be announced on this Hotline and fully reviewed in Skyword. Again, to date, the heart of these complaints have been dismissed and we are hopeful that by the Fall 2007 these lawsuits will be fully dismissed by the U.S. District Court – Eastern District of NY.
We still have 2,121 members on furlough following the recently announced recall. Of the 200 members recalled, 146 have accepted the offer of re-employment and will begin training next month. We welcome our returning furloughs and hope for more of our members to be recalled soon.
Thatís it for this week. APFA Headquarters will be closed on Monday in observance of Memorial Day Holiday. If you have an emergency over the weekend or after hours, please call 817.540.0108 and follow the prompts for the Officer On Duty.
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