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Monday, January 9, 2017
Wage Adjustment Arbitration Recap – LAA/LUS
The Wage Adjustment Arbitration Hearing ended this weekend after three full days of testimony from witnesses for both APFA and the Company. At issue is the definition of “market” in Sec.B.5.,6. of the Negotiation Protocol Agreement (NPA).
APFA’s position is clear: We believe that market includes Delta as of September 2016 when the United JCBA went into effect, resulting in an 8.18% wage increase for AA Flight Attendants on top of the 6% raise already provided to us in 2016 as a down payment toward this case.
The Company’s position is that market does not include Delta as of September 2016, but as they were in 2014, resulting in a 1.63% wage increase for AA Flight Attendants on top of the 6% raise implemented in 2016.
APFA brought in new counsel to this case. However, we were bound to use the same neutral arbitrators from the original interest arbitration after we rejected the Tentative Agreement (TA). The previous administration agreed to keep the same three neutral arbitrators.
APFA put forth an aggressive and hard fight in the hearings against the Company’s figure, and we remain committed that our position is correct, given that a true market based valuation cannot include anything less than CURRENT market rates, as opposed to a two year old snapshot of the market that has no basis in the current market as it stands today.
After the hearings, the arbitration panel advised both parties that despite the NPA provision that calls for a decision within 30 days, a ruling could take longer due to the complexities of the case and the compelling testimonies entered by both parties. Although APFA immediately objected to this delay, we received word late yesterday that the arbitration panel over-ruled our objection, stating that it could take up to 90 days to issue a ruling.
It is important to note that regardless of how long it takes to render a decision, any award will be retroactive to September 1st, 2016 when the United JCBA went into effect.
Thank you to everyone who came to the arbitration to show their support for our case as well as those who followed us on Twitter.
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