Representing the Flight Attendants
of American Airlines

Representing the Flight Attendants of American Airlines

9.17.10 – (LAA) – Negotiations Update, Pass the FAA Bill and Take Action Now, Innocents at Risk, 800 Number at HQ Disconnected, MailChimp, DFW Reps at Terminal C, MIA Sky Train Service, Professional Standards

Hello, this is APFA National Communications Coordinator, Jeff Pharr, with the Weekly Hotline Update for Friday, September 17, 2010.

NEGOTIATIONS UPDATE

This week your Negotiating Team met at APFA Headquarters in final preparation for our meeting with Federal Mediator, Pat Sims. Ms. Sims has requested that only APFA’s Table Team meet with her next week in Florida.

PASS THE FAA BILL – TAKE ACTION NOW!

Our campaign to urge Congress to pass the FAA Reauthorization Bill is in full swing. The Flight Attendant Union Coalition has committed to do everything possible to ensure the bill’s passage. This Coalition is made up of six unions representing over 90,000 Flight Attendants at 37 airlines.

This bill contains provisions that will address and improve safety and health aspects of our work lives:

  • Extends funding for the Flight Attendant fatigue study
  • Provides OSHA protection to treat the aircraft as a work environment
  • Air quality sampling
  • Cabin temperature standards
  • Bans the use of cell phones in-flight
  • Closes a loop hole that permits smoking on charter flights

This bill could possibly be delayed – for the fifteenth time. We need this bill to pass now. Call or write your Senators today and tell them to “Pass the FAA Bill Now!”

Capwiz has been activated and can be accessed through the direct link, capwiz.com/apfa, or if you are on Facebook, visit facebook.com/apfaunity and click the “Take Action” tab at the top of the page. Both links are available to your family and non-airline friends too!

INNOCENTS AT RISK

Last week’s hotline included a message from Airline Ambassadors International President and APFA member, Nancy Rivard. Nancy wrote of how the issue of Human Trafficking was brought to her attention and the many opportunities Flight Attendants have to notice and report suspicious behavior onboard.

September is Human Trafficking Awareness Month and earlier this week, the Innocents at Risk program held a reception at the Canadian Embassy in Washington, DC where APFA member and IOR based Flight Attendant Sandy Fiorini was honored for her role in the efforts to stop human trafficking. Sandy noticed young girls on her flights from Moscow to Chicago and became concerned enough that she brought it to the attention of authorities.

The Innocents at Risk program has been instrumental in literally saving thousands of lives every year. The program was quick to recognize the unique role that Flight Attendants can play in the effort to end human trafficking by providing contact information to crew members should they notice unusual behavior or believe someone may be being transported for sale into human slavery or prostitution. Nancy Rivard has been instrumental in coordinating the program for Flight Attendants. Americanís program is about bringing awareness to the Flight Attendants, not discipline.

APFA President Laura Glading attended the reception along with Nancy Rivard and APFA’s Government Affairs Representative, Julie Frederick. Laura Glading stated, “APFA is extremely grateful to Sandy and Nancy for stepping up to advocate for those who continue to remain most vulnerable in our society, women and children.” Glading continued, “Flight Attendants” intuition is unlike any other. We come in contact with hundreds of people each day. We observe, and become familiar with, so many different cultures and human behaviors. Just as our training and years of experience have taught us to notice the slightest of differences onboard as it relates to the safety of the aircraft, we can now use that ability to help curtail human trafficking.”

UNICEF estimates that 27 million people are held against their will worldwide. Human Trafficking is a $32B annual black market business

A YouTube video of a news story on Sandy and the Innocents at Risk program can be viewed here.

PLEASE CHECK THE NUMBER AND DIAL AGAIN

Effective Monday, September 20, 2010 the 800-number to reach APFA Headquarters will be disconnected. As we mentioned in previous Hotlines, the APFA Board of Directors passed a resolution (login required) to discontinue the toll-free number.

Please make note of the local number to contact APFA Headquarters ñ (817) 540-0108. And remember to update the APFA contact in your cell phones.

The number to reach the recorded hotline will remain – (800) 399-2732

FROM THE SCHEDULING DEPARTMENT

The company has posted fall-offs at several International bases for October. APFA strongly encourages Flight Attendants at those bases to back themselves up by submitting a secondary ballot of Domestic bids. To submit a secondary bid ballot; after entering and saving your primary bids, return to the HIB ballot menu and select ëSí to insert your secondary Domestic bids.

For those International Flight Attendants wishing to volunteer to fall-off onto Domestic, you must first select ë1í in the HIB menu, then option ë7í to change your division to Domestic. Return to the HIB menu and proceed as normal. Once you have closed and saved your primary ballot, enter ëHIB/Sí to enter your International secondary bid ballot.

To view your bid ballots in your personal mode:

your primary bid ballot, enter HIB/*
your secondary bid ballot, enter HIB/*/S

Flight Attendants on a reserve month, on vacation, or are serving an International lock-in are not eligible to volunteer to fall-off onto Domestic. In addition, Flight Attendants who are forced back to Domestic on a reserve month, and actually serve reserve at the Domestic base, will continue to maintain their regular reserve rotation.

MAIL CHIMP

Over the next few weeks we will be converting to a new host, Mail Chimp, which will manage this Weekly Hotline. With the conversion, e-mail addresses on file with APFA will be used. To ensure uninterrupted receipt of the APFA Weekly Hotline, please verify that we have your correct e-mail address. APFA members visit https://members.www.apfa.org to verify your information.

Members of the Press and other non-APFA members will need to re-subscribe to the Hotline. Instructions on how to subscribe will be included in next week’s Hotline.

Mail Chimp will provide for a more streamlined newsletter and give you the ability to easily manage your subscription. During the transition, you may receive duplicate e-mails. Please bear with us as we work to improve the way we provide information to you.

DFW REPRESENTATIVES IN TERMINAL C

On Wednesday September 23, 2010 DFW Chairperson Chris O’Kelley, DFW OCR and Scheduling/Contract Representative, Linda Haertling and Executive Committee member, Liz Geiss will be in DFW Terminal C Operations from 11:00-15:00 Central Time. Please stop by with any questions and concerns. Union Pins, Red Disks and Lanyards will be available.

DFW Flight Attendant and APFA Government Affairs Representative, Julie Frederick, will also be on hand with information about our legislative efforts and the importance of member involvement with the FAA Reauthorization Bill.

MIA IN MOTION

This week, the long awaited MIA skytrain began service in Terminal D. Not without a hitch though – a few Flight Attendants were late to their flights due to a glitch or two.

Things seem to be working well now and if youíve had to change gates in MIA from D1 to D60, this is a much-welcomed addition to MIA. What could take more than 22 minutes walking at a steady pace; the mile long trek now takes less than four minutes.

The train will run every two minutes and have four stops along Terminal D, and the capability of moving 9,000 passengers and crew per hour.

SADDLE-UP

First there was more room throughout coach, now there is less room throughout coach. If a company called Aviointeriors has a say, there will be exactly 23 inches in coach.

The Latina, Italy based company has developed the SkyRider seat. According to USAToday, the new airline seat would give passengers an experience akin to riding horseback. They would sit at an angle with no more than 23 inches between the seats.

Director general of Avioninteriors Groups, Dominique Menoud says, “The seat is like a saddle. Cowboys ride eight hours on their horses during the day and still feel comfortable in the saddle.”

Les Dorr, a spokesman for the FAA said, “While it’s not impossible, difficult to conceive of a standing seat that would meet all applicable FAA requirements and still be cost-effective.”

For the complete USAToday Travel story and a photo of the SkyRider seats, click here.

PROFESSIONAL STANDARDS

Professional Standards is a program in which Flight Attendants can address issues they may be having with another AA employee prior to reports being sent to management.

APFA Professional Standards Representatives are available at every base. These Representatives are trained to deal with every situation, including Rule 32 issues, and have the ability to assist in the resolution of conflicts between employees without involvement from the company.

Once the company has been notified of a situation, they must investigate. Often times this includes investigating those the employee filing the complaint as well.

Should you feel that an issues needs to be addressed, please first contact your local Professional Standards Representative. A list of each Base Council can be found on the APFA.org website. If a Professional Standards Representative is not listed on your Baseís Council, contact your Base Chairperson for assistance.

APFA.org HIGHLIGHT

A printable document with contact information for APFA’s National Officers, Executive Committee, Base Chair and Vice Chairpersons, Division Representatives, Negotiating Team, all Departments at APFA Headquarters and Professional Standards Representatives for each base is available on the APFA.org website.

Log-on to http://www.www.apfa.org, click the ëContactí link at the top right of the main page. You will find the link to the contact information document at the bottom of that page. Login is required.

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Please remember there are 1,342 members on furlough and awaiting recall.
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The Wings Foundation is much more than can recycling, though that is an important source of the funds they distribute to members in need. If you are an active American Airlines Flight Attendant and you primary home has been destroyed, please contact WINGS Disaster Relief. Visit their website for fund raising activities, to find base representatives, forms for donation ($$$, PVDs, etc.), or applications for assistance. See how you can help at your base. Wings was created by and is managed exclusively by AA Flight Attendants. Wings provide services only to AA Flight Attendants. Check out Wings and all our APFA supported organizations through these links:

Wings // Airline Ambassadors // UNICEF/Change for Good

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