6.04.08 – Negotiations Update

NEGOTIATIONS UPDATE for June 4, 2008 from APFA President Laura Glading

Yesterday, June 3, the Negotiating Team met with the APFA Board of Directors to provide a briefing on the June and July schedule for bargaining and membership actions.

On June 10, we will exchange our opening proposals with management and devote the rest of the month to negotiations. In the first week of July, we will prepare for membership meetings at each base. These Road Shows will begin on July 8 in Los Angeles and will end on July 29 in Miami. The full list of dates is provided at the end of this HotLine.

As we explained to the Board, negotiations do not occur in a vacuum; the condition of the economy, the industry and American Airlines all influence the progress and outcome of bargaining. The circumstances in which we bargain, however, do not lessen the pain of the RPA. Many of us cannot pay our bills, our mortgages or the educational expenses of our children. Some have lost their homes, and if nothing changes, others will. We cannot afford the time it will take to negotiate all the improvements that must ultimately be made to our contract. Protracted bargaining without any resolution merely prolongs the suffering of our members.

As you probably know, in May the Company offered the Transport Workers Union a two-year contract that would provide at least a dose of immediate relief. While TWU rejected that proposal, what it does demonstrate is that the Company is willing to negotiate a short-term agreement.

We have now agreed to meet with the Company. APFA’s purpose is to spend the next three weeks focused exclusively on reaching an agreement that provides immediate relief to the Flight Attendants. While success may be unlikely, if we do not at least make the effort, failure is certain.

Before reaching this understanding with management, the Negotiating Committee had decided that in July we would hold Road Shows to describe the bargaining process, the economic environment, and the actions our members can take to help secure a new collective bargaining agreement. If we do negotiate an immediate relief package, the Road Shows will become part of the membership ratification process during which time we will explain the terms of the tentative agreement.

If no agreement is reached, we will know more than ever that we must mobilize into a single unified force in order to maximize our leverage at the bargaining table and the value of our contract. In that case, we will use the Road Shows to explain how 18,000 Flight Attendants will “Mobilize to Maximize.”

The dates of the Road Shows are as follows:

July 8: Los Angeles
July 9: San Francisco
July 10: Chicago
July 15: Dallas/Fort Worth
July 16: Boston
July 17: New York
July 22: Raleigh-Durham
July 23: St. Louis
July 24: Washington
July 29: Miami

Within the next few days we will announce the locations of the meetings in each city. We thank you for your support and look forward to seeing you next month.

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