APFA weekly HotLine update for Friday, August 21, 2009.
- Furlough Mitigation Proffers reopen for one week. New COBRA Medical Benefit features.
- APFA Virtual Picket Line now up and marching. Click here and join in today.
- Watch your mail: OUR TURN Around Campaign is starting. Add yellow disk to your APFA pin.
- Still time to email your Senators to urge support for Flight Attendant friendly bills. (details below)
FURLOUGH MITIGATION PROFFERS REOPEN FOR ONE WEEK
A recent determination was made that Flight Attendants accepting Overage Leaves commencing by December 31 of this year, or the Travel Separation Program, may be eligible for COBRA Medical Benefit subsidies associated with the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. As both the company and APFA had received a significant number of comments from members expressing interest in Leaves or Travel Separation had medical benefits been included, we came to agreement with the company to reopen the Furlough Mitigation proffers for one week to permit those who may now decide to opt for a leave, or to increase the length of their leave proffer-or to opt for Travel Separation-to take advantage of the enhanced benefit under this federal program.
As President Laura Glading stated in her Special HotLine recorded on August 18, “We know that Flight Attendants are very anxious for the [leave] proffer results, but we believe this new information may permit many members to reconsider and submit a ballot or increase the amount of leave time they’d originally requested. [We] thank you for your patience as we work through this process and strive to save the careers of our most junior colleagues.”
A review of the benefits and a summary document (click here are posted on the Reduction in Force page of APFA.org, viewable without website login. A link to a Question and Answer document from the Department of Labor with eligibility details is also on that page.
Our Headquarters Reps-on-Duty have received increased calls since this information was released, including special interest in the one or two month leave blocks of October and/or November 2009. Remember that Flight Attendants awarded a leave block of one or both of these months will receive credit for fulfilling their reserve rotation if it is their regular reserve rotation and their seniority is subject to reserve.
If you are now bidding a leave for the first time, please check all the information available on the Reduction in Force page. Please contact an APFA Rep-on-Duty via email (click here or Headquarters extension 8171 if you need assistance. More information is available as well from the Flight Service website. (click here – Jetnet login required.)
The reopened proffer for Overage Leaves or Modified Partnership Flying closes at 8:30 AM (0830) Central Time on Wednesday, August 26. The reopened Travel Separation Program proffer closes earlier, at 11:00 PM (2300) Central Time on Tuesday, August 25.
WATCH YOUR MAIL FOR “OUR TURN” AROUND CAMPAIGN MATERIALS
Arriving in members’ mailboxes beginning this week is material vital to OUR TURN Around Campaign: a two-colored “pin jacket” disk to be paced behind your APFA pin. When you receive your disk, please immediately place it behind your APFA pin with the yellow side showing. Pins and Wings continues with the addition of this one piece which all members are requested to be wearing by the time mediated talks with the company reopen in Washington, DC on August 31. Don’t wait until then; put your yellow disk behind your APFA pin as soon as you receive it and encourage your fellow Flight Attendants to do the same. As company management walks the airport concourses and operations areas and travels around our system, we need to demonstrate to AA and to the traveling public that we’ve GOT UNION.
JOIN APFAíS VIRTUAL PICKET LINE – ENCOURAGE YOUR FRIENDS TO JOIN TOO!
Even before receiving your OUR TURN Around Campaign letter and disk, start your own action now by joining APFA’s online Virtual Picket Line. Anyone and everyone is encouraged to sign up and add their own picket sign wording by going to: www.apfavirtualpicket.com. Include this site address in your emails to friends and family. Add your name and have them add theirs to those already marching in our virtual protest. While on the site, checkout the links to APFAís Facebook, Twitter and YouTube sites.
VIEW JUNE MEMBERSHIP OUTREACH MEETING VIDEOS ONLINE
Hundreds of members unable to attend the June Outreach Meetings have watched some or all of the meeting videos now playing on APFA.org (click here – website login required). Part four explains OUR TURN Around Campaign in more detail while all the video segments (each several minutes long) provide an extensive overview of our negotiations goals and progress. As your Team prepares for the resumption of mediated talks on August 31, visibly demonstrate your unity with your Team, your fellow Flight Attendants and your Union by wearing only your APFA pin-backed by the yellow disk-and wings. If you need a replacement APFA pin, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call headquarters ext. 8153 (817.540.0108) and leave your name, employee number, base and address information.
THERE IS MORE GOING ON IN WASHINGTON THAN HEALTH CARE DEBATES
Hundreds of you have responded-thousands more need to do so-in our legislative campaigns.
Don’t let the media-monopolizing health care debates convince you that there are not other vital measures being discussed in the halls of government. Two Senate bills important to Flight Attendants are making their way through the law-making process. While your US Senators are in recess in their home states, take the time to email them and urge their support for:
- The Airline Flight Crew Technical Corrections Act (S.1422) aims to clarify the eligibility requirements of the Family Leave and Medical Act with respect to airline flight crews who have been largely left out of the eligibility calculation of the FMLA due to our unusual scheduling patterns.
- The FAA Reauthorization Legislation (S.1451) contains all of our Flight Attendant provisions, including the fatigue study, OSHA Regulations and English Language requirements. It is expected on the Senate floor in September.
Take a moment now to use our Capwiz page fill-in forms to email your Senators through these two links:
ATTENTION ALL STL BASED FLIGHT ATTENDANTS ñ UPCOMING VICE CHAIR ELECTION
The Notifications of Willingness-to-Serve (WTS) for the position of Vice Chairperson at STL have been mailed and are due back in the post office box indicated on the notice by 10 AM (1000) Central Time on Wednesday, September 9, 2009. Please contact the National Ballot Committee with any questions via email to: email@example.com or headquarters extension 8311. The complete election timeline is detailed on the Elections and Balloting page of APFA.org. (A downloadable WTS is available on that page.)
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Remember that there are now 1,252 members on furlough and awaiting recall.
The Wings Foundation continues its important work at each base in our system. Many Flight Attendants have received assistance from Wings thanks to the generosity and the efforts of the APFA membership. Please visit their website to learn more, or contact a base Wings volunteer. Go to: wingsfoundation.com