Hotline Update – December 1, 2011
APFA President Laura Glading released a video message to the Membership today. Today’s Hot line message is a transcription of that video—–
I’m Laura Glading, APFA President.
This week’s filing of Chapter 11 Bankruptcy by American Airlines – while not a complete surprise – came as a deep disappointment to me personally, a feeling I know you all share.
I am disappointed that the state of the company is such that management felt its only option was to take this drastic step.
And I am disappointed that despite our tremendous sacrifices, management was unable to steer American Airlines to profitability.
This is a very difficult, uncertain time for us all.
I know many of you are worried and concerned about your future and the future of a company to which we have given so much of our lives.
I made a promise to you as your president to fight for you each and every day, to protect jobs and to enhance our profession.
I made a promise to be honest with you about what is at stake and the challenges that lay ahead.
I cannot tell you that the company will not make tremendous demands as part of this process.
But I do promise you that I will be there for you every step of the way as we work towards the best possible outcome for you and your families.
I promise you that your voice will be heard in this process.
I promise you that if we remain strong and unified we can succeed.
While we may not always have immediate answers, I promise to work hard to keep you as informed as possible throughout this process. I will be issuing daily briefings via the Hotline, and APFA has launched a dedicated section of our website where you can stay up to date on the process, find answers to commonly asked questions, and access all the information we have available.
Over the next 12 to 18 months, American will undergo a process of reorganization. During this time, the airline will continue to operate. This process is not without precedent and it is one for which we are all very well prepared.
Without diminishing the seriousness of what is at stake, I want to assure you that our contract remains in place with no changes to wages and benefits. Any changes will be negotiated as part of the legal process and will need to be approved by the court.
When new CEO Thomas Horton spoke to reporters this week, he expressed confidence that American will emerge from this process a more successful airline. He reiterated that the American brand remains strong, and that the company has the best people, the best hubs and a growing global network.
Over the coming months, I will be working with the company, the courts and our fellow unions to ensure that American’s most important asset ñ the employees ñ are protected as we all work toward making American a stronger airline.
We have been through some very difficult times together. We are tenacious, resilient and we have proven time and time again that we are able to face difficult challenges ñ and not only to survive but eventually prevail.
Unity and teamwork are crucial.
And please stay informed by checking the APFA website regularly.