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11.07.15 – LGA Base Brief – Fall/Winter 2015

Saturday, November 7, 2015

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LGA Base Brief – Fall/Winter 2015

Relief Bidding During the Holidays – 

As we approach the holiday months, it’s a good time for a refresher on Relief Bidding. Here is a Relief Bidding Article written by our Contract Chair that you can reference. The most frequently asked question is, “Why did they plot a trip in the vacation period of a relief line?” The answer surprises a lot of Flight Attendants. Only the Duty Free Periods in the vacation period are protected. That means you can be plotted on any Days Off scheduled that fall on the line during the vacation. Additionally, No Pre plot and Duty Free requests are NOT honored for relief lines.

It’s also the first Winter holiday season with combined operations. We recommend you back yourself up by bidding more than normal, as Flight Attendants tend to bid differently in these months. It’s better to hold a line of your choosing rather than being assigned a bid if you are not able to hold anything in your ballot.

Commuter Policy

With the possibility of bad weather – if you are a commuter, please familiarize yourself with the Commuter Policy – Section 37. I in the JCBA – you must commute on American Airlines or its wholly owned carriers. You must designate yourself as a commuter with Flight Service and list an airport served by American Airlines or its wholly owned carriers. Please keep any and all supporting documentation from the reservations system and present them to your Flight Service Manager (FSM) within 7 days of the unable to commute incident.

Attendance Policy

Please keep in mind, during the dates identified by the company as the critical period – December 22 through January 3, each sick call and trip missed will count as two points. If you call out sick and provide a doctor’s note to your FSM indicating that you were seen and treated (NO MEDICAL INFORMATION IS NECESSARY)  on the dates that coincide with your sick call, your FSM can reduce the sick call from 2 points to 1 point.  If you had perfect attendance for 12 months or more and you had no chargeable occurrences during the critical period of the previous year, you will NOT need a doctor’s note, your absence will be counted as 1 point. If you had perfect attendance for 12 months or more, and you did incur an absence during the critical period of the previous year, a doctor’s note must be provided in order to have the absence counted as one point. You must notify your FSM within 2 days of clearing sick of your intent to provide a doctor’s note. 

IF you are on 2 WW or Pre-Term you are required to have a meeting with your FSM to discuss your attendance, please exercise your right of having a union representative with you at these meetings.

Personnel Records

Section 37.Q.5 permits Flight Attendants the ability to schedule an appointment with their FSM to review her/his file, in managements presence, during regular office hours. Documents in the FA’s department file, including electronic records used to track job performance or attendance, may be duplicated upon request.

Section 37.Q also speaks to the handling of documents containing positive comments (a copy of such comments should be provided to you by your FSM), the handling of derogatory comments, the ability of a FA to provide a written response to any document or notation containing derogatory comments, and any letter or comment that did not result in discipline, shall be removed from a FA’s file 12 months after it was placed in her/his file.

Because we know that the reserve numbers can fluctuate during the holiday period, we thought that we would provide information specific to reserve as well…..

Reserve Assignments

There are actually two contractually permissible ways to assign Reserves.

Per Article 10.H, assignments during the month should be made in time accrued order. The lowest time Reserve receives the highest time trip.

Duration is an exception and an override to the system (Article 10.K.6) that should be justified when used. Duration means that instead of assigning lowest time Reserve to highest time trip, the assignment program called Time Accrued Reserve System (TARS) also takes into account how many days the reserve is available to fly. It then matches the Reserve’s days of availability with sequences of the same length and assigns lowest time reserve with highest time matching trip.

The best way to be prepared for possible assignments is to monitor both your relative position in the time accrued system and also in your days available grouping. Remember, the HI25 is a guideline and doesn’t indicate who ahead of may be legal for the same assignments.

If you believe that an error has been made, contact APFA with all of the pertinent information, ASAP.

RESERVE – Three-Hour Co-Terminal Call Out
Minimum Reserve Call Out Time – JCBA Section 12.H.1.

Reserve Flight Attendants shall report to co-terminal bases within three (3) hours from the time s/he is notified of an assignment by Crew Schedule. This does not refer to sign-in time or departure time. It means the Flight Attendant must be at the airport in three (3) hours. The exact language in the JCBA is as follows:

1. A Reserve shall be required to report within two (2) hours from the time s/he is notified of a sequence by Crew Schedule. If a Reserve reports to the airport after check-in time for the sequence, s/he shall receive pay and credit for the sequence as if s/he had checked in for the sequence at the same time as the rest of the crew. As an exception, Reserve Flight Attendants at co-terminals shall be provided three (3) hours call out.

This will affect the Make Up (MU) timeline. In non co-terminal bases, MU must be offered up to three (3) hours prior to departure and after that time, Short Call MU may be offered prior to assigning a Reserve who then has two hours to report. Recognizing that Short Call is important to the Flight Attendants who utilize it and to Crew Schedule for coverage, we have agreed that, MU will be processed up to four (4) hours prior to departure at co-terminal bases, instead of three (3) hours. Short Call may then be offered at all co-terminal bases prior to assigning to a Reserve, who will have three (3) hours to report.

Current LAA Co -Terminal Bases are:

  • LGA / JFK / EWR
  • MIA / FLL / PBI
  • LAX / SNA / ONT
  • DCA / IAD / BWI
  • SFO / SJC

Q&As for Minimum Reserve Call Out Time – Section 12.H.1

Q: If I am based in a city with co-terminals, when does the two-hour call out apply?
A: Never.  All co-terminal airports will have the three (3)-hour call out. For example: If you are based in MIA and are called out to either FLL or MIA, the call out will be three (3) hours. The two (2)-hour call out will only apply when based at a non-co-terminal station.

Q: Is it three (3) hours to departure or sign-in time?
A: Neither. Once Crew Schedule has established contact with the Flight Attendant, you will have three (3) hours to report to the airport.

Q: What if Crew Schedule calls me with less than three (3) hours ?
A: Remember the report is no longer based on sign-in or departure. Once contact is established you have three (3) hours to report to the Airport. If the scheduler assigns you to a trip that has a departure time of less than 3 hours co, you would then state: “I will try my best.”

If you do not make the flight, Crew Schedule may assign you to airport standby, give you another trip or keep you on Ready Reserve. Your guarantee stays intact. You will not receive a Late Report or Missed Trip in this scenario.

Q: What if I don’t make sign-in time?
A: Your obligation is to make it to the airport within three (3) hours. If you miss sign-in time, you will not receive a Late Report and your pay and credit will be as if you had signed in with the rest of the crew.

Q: What if I had more than three (3) hours and did not make the flight?
A: Crew Schedule would give you a Missed Trip. However, if you remain available for another assignment that day, your guarantee will remain intact. You should contact your Flight Service Manager for a possible attendance resolution.

Q: Can I still input a preference for short call?
A: Yes, the option is still available. A Flight Attendant may indicate a preference to be called out of order for a trip with less than two (2) hours to departure. In making such an assignment, Crew Schedule will consider the Flight Attendant’s preference for a co-terminal, if any.

35-in-7 Update – Reserves

The programming is completed for the 35-in-7 legality during Reserve months. The computer will count all the time in the previous month, so Crew Schedule will still need to manually review the previous month’s flying during the first six days of the Reserve month to exclude OEs. After the 7th day of the month, the programming will capture all applicable flying that counts toward the illegality and no assignments exceeding the 35 hour limit will be made unless the Flight Attendant waives for the month. 

Effective November 1st, a Reserve looking back into the line month will also exclude TTs from the calculation. The JCBA language for 35-in-7 for Reserve excludes ETB transactions. ETB is equivalent to LAA OE and TT transactions. There’s one conflict in the current TT system regarding the need to 2-4-1: a TT could potentially be a Flight Attendant’s original trip that’s been used for a trade. Because it is an original trip, it will be included until ETB is implemented. The Flight Attendant needs to alert Crew Schedule at the point of assignment to include the trip in the 35-in-7 calculation. The scheduler will confirm by pulling the Flight Attendant’s bid award. If the 35-in-7 illegality exists, the Flight Attendant would be removed from the reserve trip. 

35-in-7 is based on actual block hours. Please keep in mind it is possible to be paid more than 35 hours in 7 days without actually having a 35-in-7 legality. Only actual hours flown are considered for 35-in-7, even though you are paid the greater of scheduled versus actual flight time. For calculating future trips, use scheduled flying time only.

The following hours do NOT count towards 35-in-7:  

  • Deadheading
  • OR/OE
  • TT (unless it was your original scheduled trip on your selection)
  • ATC
  • Diversion
  • Standby
  • Duty and Trip Rigs (E,F,G,P)
  • Location Delay Incentive (LE) and Voluntary Duty Waiver (VE)
  • Ready for Departure (RFD)
  • Ramp Congestion Delays (RCD)

As a reminder, each of us carries with us the JCBA each time we come to work…if you have your FA tablet, you have a copy of the JCBA; it’s in “Documents”. You can also download (on your personal electronic device) the LAA On-Duty Contract Guide.  The LAA On-Duty Contract Guide is also available in the Document section of the FA Tablet.


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