This is Laura Glading, APFA President, with a Special Hotline, for April 1, 2008.
As Brett, Denise, Juan and I assume office today, I would first like to acknowledge the selfless service of our predecessors, Tommie, Greg and Cathy as their term of office comes to an end, and wish them every success in the future.
Today marks a new beginning for APFA and for you. We have announced a national campaign and call to action for all flight attendants. It is time to hold AA management accountable for their promise that our shared sacrifices would result in shared rewards. In 2003, under threat of imminent bankruptcy, we stepped forward to save American Airlines. Mr. Arpey wrote a letter to all AA employees stating, and I quote: “My strongest hope and expectation is that everyone will share in the rewards that our ongoing efforts will produce in the future.” Five years later, American’s employees continue to sacrifice while management has rewarded itself year after year with bonuses worth hundreds of millions of dollars. In the last three years, the bonuses have been worth in excess of $340 million. The time has come for management to live up to its promises and forego any further bonuses until we have a ratified agreement that recognizes and rewards our collective efforts.
To that end, this morning a letter was delivered to AA’s top 5 executives, calling for them to decline their upcoming bonuses or resign their positions, with notice to APFA by April 15th, 2008. I also held a press conference at APFA Headquarters announcing our “DECLINE or RESIGN” national campaign. All members will shortly receive an urgent letter outlining the details of the campaign as well as a hangtag to be worn behind your I.D. Initially, your Negotiating Team and Leadership are asking that you display the “DECLINE” side of your hangtag. If Mr. Arpey and his Executive Team fail to decline their bonuses, we will ask that you flip the tag over on April 16th and display the “RESIGN” side of the hangtag.
As I made clear in my letter, these executives simply cannot continue to lead our Company with legitimacy and credibility if they continue to reward themselves while you pay for their bonuses with your personal sacrifices. Should they fail to heed our call to make good on their promise of ìshared gain for shared painî that elicited the flight attendantsí participation in restructuring our company in 2003, I will have no choice but to ask for their resignations on April 16th.
As we move forward, I know that I can count on you. Be assured: you can count on me.
Thank you for calling the APFA Hotline.