Friday, October 25, 2019
Dear APFA Members,
I can’t believe it’s already fall! The weather isn’t the only thing changing around here. We’ve got lots going on at APFA and I’d like to update you on a few things I know you will be interested in hearing about.
I recently met with Doug Parker to discuss Flight Attendant morale, Cabin Air Quality (fumes), the anticipated re-entry of the 737 MAX, and other issues of concern for our Flight Attendants. Regarding Flight Attendant morale, we believe it’s necessary to address more scheduling flexibility and ways to incentivize our work group. Of course, we brought up the Hard 40 again for scheduling flexibility. I also reminded management that Flight Attendants spend the most time with our passengers and I believe we are the company’s best asset when it comes to positive impact on our customers.
Health is a major concern for us, and fume events continue to impact the health of our cabin crews. I asked Doug to highly consider being the first airline to install Ozone/VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) converters, which would help immensely in filtering out harmful compounds from cabin air, putting our crew members’ health first. I learned about these ozone converters at the London GCAQE conference I spoke at in September (Click here to view my speech). After all, when Flight Attendants are happy, our customers are happy and the bottom line shows it. The meeting went well and was also attended by Robert Isom, Kurt Stache, Jill Surdek and APFA National VP Liz Geiss.
We just concluded the annual Fall Board of Director’s meeting last week with a full agenda. Some of the items on the agenda included improper bidding practices (cartels), satellite bases, 777 staffing grievance, the 737 MAX return, and mobilizing our members. Minutes of the meeting will be posted within 30 days. While we would love to see more of our members attend these meetings, we know it’s frustrating when there are times we must go into closed attorney-client privileged sessions. The National Secretary and I will be discussing with the Board some ways that we can format our Union meetings to make them more member-friendly for attendance. One idea is to organize and consolidate the off-record sessions into one time-frame so our members know in advance and can plan to attend during open sessions.
Also on the horizon: The annual APFA convention will be held in Los Angeles in March of 2020. Five of our long-time, dedicated Union representatives will receive our highest APFA award, the Martha W. Griffiths award, and one of our UAW staff will receive her 20-year honorary APFA award at this convention. All members in good standing are welcome to attend and you will be hearing more about dates and details in the near future.
The end of October is proving to be a very active time for the Union. We have negotiations sessions on October 29 and 30. The Negotiating Committee is working on a scheduling survey that we plan to get out to you in the next few weeks. Our legislative affairs team is holding a lobby day at our nation’s capital with 50 volunteers meeting with legislators on our various Flight Attendant issues. Additionally, our APFA contract and scheduling departments are conducting a contract training with 100 members at the end of October in the Dallas area. We thank you for volunteering your time for lobby day and contract training. We always say know your contract – knowledge is power!
In my next hotline, you will hear about the many things planned for November. Have a great Halloween, and fly safe!
In Unity and Solidarity,
Lori L. Bassani
APFA National President