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Thursday, August 11, 2016
Settlement Reached on the LUS Jumpseat Weight and Balance Presidential Grievance
On November 11, 2015, APFA filed a Presidential Grievance on behalf of the LUS Flight Attendants concerning the Company’s unilateral decision to eliminate the jumpseat weight and balance provision (Sec.37.H.7. of the Red Book) prior to Flight Attendant Operational Integration (FOI). An arbitration date was set for August 11th and 12th, 2016.
The implementation letter of the Joint Collective Bargaining Agreement (JCBA) states, “The weight restriction jumpseat provision for the LUS Flight Attendants will be eliminated concurrent with the elimination of the same provision for the LUS Pilots. The effective date is to be determined” (L.1.N.).
APFA contends that subsequent to reaching an agreement on the JCBA’s implementation letter, the Company, in discussions with the APFA, agreed to revise the elimination date of the jumpseat weight and balance provision to be concurrent with FOI. However, the Company denies this revised date was a firm promise. The Company advised the APFA that its decision to eliminate this provision for the flight attendant and pilots was as result of moving to one Passenger Service System (PSS) on October 17, 2015.
Knowing that arbitrators at times refer to written contractual language in order to reach a decision, APFA made several attempts to reach a settlement with the Company prior to arbitration, since the JCBA tied the elimination of the jumpseat weight and balance with that of the Pilots’. After much negotiation, APFA reached a settlement with the Company on August 10th.
We believe the settlement secures the most benefits for our LUS members as a resolution to this dispute. The ultimate victory would have been to restore the jumpseat weight and balance provision. However, such restoration was not possible, since the only issue before the arbitrator was the timing of when the weight and balance provision would be eliminated.
The settlement includes the following terms:
- If commuting to work, the Flight Attendant holding a line, at the Company’s discretion, (1) shall be released from her/his trip with full pay protection or (2) shall be provided a deadhead into position in order to split back onto her/his scheduled pairing and shall be paid for the missed portion of the pairing but not the deadhead.
- If commuting to work, a Reserve Flight Attendant’s guarantee shall not be reduced for missing either part or all of her/his assigned reserve availability period (RAP). Alternatively, the provisions in paragraph one (1) above shall apply to a Reserve who is scheduled to work a pairing that originates on an available day or day off.
- If not commuting to work and the Flight Attendant is denied jumpseat travel or denied jumpseat boarding due to a weight and balance restriction, the appropriate resolution shall be agreed to by the APFA and the Company.
- A Flight Attendant eligible under the terms of this agreement is a Flight Attendant who would have otherwise been accommodated on the jumpseat based on the order of assignment and time of check-in. The affected Flight Attendant must contact Daily Ops at 682-315-7070 or toll free at 1-888-222-4737 within thirty (30) minutes of the denied boarding to be eligible for the protections provided for in this Settlement.
- Notwithstanding the provision of Section 37.I.4. of the Joint Collective Bargaining Agreement, a Flight Attendant shall not incur a dependability infraction for missing part or all of the scheduled pairing or RAP, so long as she/he follows both the Crew Schedule notification procedure in Section 37.I.3. and supervisor notification procedure in Section 37.I.4.
Realizing this issue was a deep concern for our LUS members, we made it a top priority and worked diligently to bring about this resolution.