APFA weekly HotLine update for Friday, February 26
- It’s February 26 – and it’s ALL SYSTEMS RED
- Talks resume in a five-day lockdown session in Washington
- February update and November 18 base events videos now playing
- Email AA execs to show you support your APFA Team
- AA’s negotiations propaganda – what’s wrong with this picture?
- APFA meets with sister unions, congressional leaders
- FAA Reauthorization – a renewed push for Senate action
IT’S FEBRUARY 26 – WHAT COLOR IS YOUR DISK?
It’s February 26 and the beginning of All Systems Red. As your APFA Negotiating Team travels today to Washington, DC to resume mediated, lockdown talks with AA in the heart of the National Mediation Board headquarters, all Flight Attendants should turn around their yellow ‘Got Union’ disks to the red ‘Got Guts’ side to show solidarity with their negotiators and our collective determination to reach our goals. Wear only your APFA pin with the red disk behind it—along with your Flight Attendant wings—on your uniform. Management is traveling too, and scurrying about airport concourses doing … whatever it is they do. Make sure they, your fellow employees and the traveling public know that you are Seeing Red as we enter this five-day intensified session to reach an agreement recognizing our sacrifices and achieving our just rewards. Keep the ‘Got Guts’ red side of your disk showing until further notice. “I’m Seeing Red” bag tag inserts are downloadable through this link. Print some and share with your fellow crewmembers.
Just why we are Seeing Red is writ large in the Negotiations Update video playing on our YouTube channel (transcript here). APFA President Laura Glading, along with APFA Chief Negotiator Anne Loew, lay out the bare facts of the company’s positions on work rules, pay and benefits that only further erode our standard of living and fail miserably to live up to “shared gain for shared pain”—long ago promised and just as quickly forgotten.
In an APFA News Release regarding the talks, President Glading stated: “It’s clear management has the financial resources to negotiate a ratifiable agreement. We’ve worked hard to narrow the outstanding issues in these negotiations. With this round of talks, it’s time for the company to put some real money on the table so we can reach an agreement that recognizes the sacrifices and hard work of Flight Attendants.” (Click here for the full press release.)
APFA MEMBERS KNOW HOW TO MOBILIZE
While we have endured the company’s stalling tactics for over 21 months of talks, APFA members have continually shown we know how to reach the public with our message, as befits our highly visible role of onboard safety and service professionals. Our November 18 picketing event video, also playing on our YouTube channel, shows the impact we can have and is a stark reminder of our determination today—just as we were determined in our strike of 1993—to achieve our goal of a just contract.
Through www.apfa.org, members with a website login can send one of three messages to top AA Executives to deliver the same message of our determination directly to their email inboxes. Click here to send your email today. (You must be logged into the APFA website to access the page. If necessary, log into the site then return to this message and click on the link above again.)
NEGOTIATIONS NEWS OR JUST MORE SPIN?
We also know how to see through the latest tactic from management, trying to put the shiniest glow on their tarnished old methods—attempting to negotiate directly with the membership. Just who are those smiling, vague souls on the cover of their glossy negotiations update? Surely not typical AA Flight Attendants coming off another three-day, 10-leg sequence, with maximum duty days, minimum layovers and staffing, and no food. Then again, this is truly how the company views us—and tries to depict us to the public. Maybe those pictured on the front just haven’t yet read what’s inside, because there the spin is no better. They spend page after page illustrating how little their proposals will really cost us in terms of increased hours worked and healthcare premiums, reduced vacation and sick time, etc. Cost us? We’ve already spent enough! Over a million dollars per day and still counting. When someone from management tries to hand you this empty bag of promises, hand it right back with a firm “My Negotiating Team Speaks for Me!”—and watch out for that other hand clutching at your wallet.
AIRLINE UNIONS ON THE WORLD’S STAGE
Two major events in the labor front this week—from our sisters and brothers at two of the world’s largest and most recognized airlines—remind us again that we are not alone in our struggles. From Lufthansa came a brief though effective strike by their pilots (represented by Vereinigung Cockpits). Intended as the first of several four-day actions, Monday’s strike ended early with an agreement to return to talks. Lufthansa’s pilots are protesting continued threats to their job security as more and more smaller European carriers are purchased by the immense German airline.
The Unite union at British Airways, representing their Flight Attendants, certified on Monday the overwhelming approval (80.7 %) of a strike authorization by their nearly 12,000 members. The British Airways Flight Attendants are facing unilaterally imposed reduced staffing and pay freezes by a management determined to extract ever more concessions from its workers.
They are different unions in different countries, but facing the same issues as just about every union at nearly every major carrier here in the U.S. These and other topics were at the forefront in this week’s meeting in Washington of the Flight Attendant union coalition, hosted by AFA and attended by APFA officers and other Representatives. Joint, multi-union lobbying of Congressional leaders followed as the industry’s labor organizations seek to find more and more common ground and to pool their efforts to highlight Flight Attendant needs and struggles on the national and international stage.
One primary area of focus in the Congressional outreach was the FAA Reauthorization Bill, passed in the House but pending action in the Senate. This is an important piece of legislation that includes many key provisions for Flight Attendants. Stated APFA President Glading and AFA-CWA President Pat Friend in a joint press release: “We are thankful to Senators Harry Reid and Charles Schumer for their commitment to move this vital piece of legislation forward. Workplace safety and health protections for Flight Attendants have been ignored for far too long and we have worked tirelessly to ensure that crucial measures are included the current FAA Reauthorization bill.” (Click here for complete release.)
If you have not yet sent in your letter or email of support to your Senators regarding the FAA Reauthorization Bill, please go to the APFA Capwiz site today and do so. It takes just a few mouse clicks. Click here now to access the site.
APFA 2010 ANNUAL CONVENTION
The 2010 APFA Annual Convention will be held in the DFW area from Sunday, March 7 through Wednesday, March 10. Scheduled start time on day one is 9:00 AM. Location is the Nylo Hotel in Irving, TX. Members in good standing are welcome to attend all open portions of the Convention. Be aware that BOD Meetings/Conventions may have frequent and lengthy off record (closed) sessions.
IDF BASE MEETING
The IDF Chairperson and Vice Chairperson have scheduled a Base Meeting for Thursday, March 18 beginning at 10:00 AM. The place is the Unity Pays room at APFA Headquarters, 1004 W. Euless Blvd. in Euless, TX. (click here for map) Members in good standing are invited to attend.
CHICAGO RETIREMENT BRIEFINGS
APFA Retirement briefings, presented by IDF Flight Attendant, Patrick Hancock, are scheduled for Chicago on the following dates/times:
- March 24 at 9:00 AM and 12:00 noon
- April 27 at 2:00 PM
Briefings last approximately two hours and will be held in the Flight Service Conference Room on the lower level ops area at K19, across from the FYI Center. Discussions include pension selections and retirement benefits, including insurance and travel. To get the most out of these helpful and popular seminars, print out and bring your personal pension estimate and plan calculation formulas from Jetnet. Flight Attendants from all bases are welcome to attend and no reservations are required.
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Tell AA Executives You Are Seeing Red
As your Negotiating Team meets with the company at NMB offices in Washington, make sure management knows that Flight Attendants are Seeing Red! We have three messages ready to go to get our message across (text of each message is copied below). Please go to the link below and choose one of the three email messages to send to AA’s top 6 executives to show your support for the APFA Negotiating Team during contract negotiations. Let’s show management we will not back down until they recognize the sacrifices we have made to save our airline and give us the raises and contract we deserve.
You must be logged into the APFA website to access the page. If necessary, log into the site then return to this message and click on the link again. The link is:
Send your message today!
— Got Guts —
We’ve “Got Guts.” I’m writing to show my support for the APFA Negotiating Team during our contract negotiations. It’s time for management to recognize the sacrifices we have made to save our airline, by giving us the raises and contract we deserve. You claim that the company can’t afford pay increases for Flight Attendants, yet you find money to invest in new amenities, new aircraft, renovations of admirals clubs, and even to reward yourself with enormous bonuses year after year. How can you ask us for more concessions? This is completely unacceptable. We are the face of American Airlines, and it’s time for you to invest in your most valuable asset! We have the unity and guts to do whatever it takes.
— It’s OUR TURN now —
Enough is enough. Flight Attendants have made concessions for seven long years. We have nothing left to give. We deserve a contract that recognizes the sacrifices we made in 2003. It’s OUR TURN to get back what we were promised; American Airlines can afford it. It’s time to reinvest in your hard-working employees. It’s time to be a respectable employer. It’s time to give Flight Attendants a contract. It’s OUR TURN now!
— Seeing Red —
Flight Attendants are seeing red. When we agreed to the Restructuring Participation Agreement seven years ago, we were promised “Shared Sacrifice, Shared Gain.” You have broken that promise. You take bonuses each year, while we continue to make sacrifices. Now you are asking for more concessions. No way, no how! It’s time for you to put some real money on the table. If not, make no mistake, we are willing, able, and ready to do what is necessary to get the contract we deserve.
Remember that there are currently 1,410 members on furlough and awaiting recall.
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UNICEF/Change for Good, is extending their special campaign for Haiti by directing all donations for the month of February to relief efforts there. See their website, or inquire of one of the many Flight Attendant “Champions for Children Volunteers,” for more information.
Please visit all our APFA Supported organizations through their websites:
Currently, no scheduled events...