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3.21.20 – An Update from PHL Base President, Kim Kaswinkel

Saturday, March 21, 2020

An Update from PHL Base President, Kim Kaswinkel

Dear Philadelphia Flight Attendants,

Breaking News: The Company announced that April 2020 VLOA’s have been reopened for Reserve Flight Attendants.

  • To submit your ballot for the VLOA: Jetnet > Flight Service > Crew Resources > Manning > Voluntary Leave of Absence. You may also click here and sign in with your Jetnet information.
  • Reserve April 2020 VLOA’s will close March 27th at 1000 DFW time.

 

Unfortunately, the airlines are not the only companies that find themselves in difficult situations with the COVID-19 outbreak. Many Governors are issuing orders that non-life sustaining business/facilities must close. Pennsylvania is one of them. We do not yet know what this means for Philadelphia based Flight Attendants.  We have not yet been provided an update from AA on any exemptions to this order.

I am very sad to report that new hire classes 03-05 were released from training yesterday. Classes 06-11 have been postponed until further notice. We will be welcoming new hires from classes 01 and 02. Base indoctrinations are still scheduled for March 23rd and March 30th. We were advised they will be holding the base indoctrinations via WebEx. PHL APFA typically provides a presentation on contractual issues, a walkthrough on placing bids in ROTA, as well as other essential information to help them prepare for their new life on the line.  Clearly, they are not going to receive the one on one assistance, direction and attention they deserve. We ask that if you are in the crew room or work with one of these new hires, please offer any assistance possible. This is not fair to them, but unfortunately, it is unavoidable.

CQT has been canceled until further notice, and that is all the information we have at this time. If you had CQ scheduled and you have questions, we recommend you reach out to your FSM. The company has also set up a team to assist Flight Attendants with COVID-19 questions. They may be reached at 800-447-2000. APFA is working with the company to put together a process and LOA for pay protection for a positive test or required quarantine. More information will follow in the coming days.

We are all awaiting the PBS bid results, and we know there will be awards of IPD trips that will not operate. At this time, only contractual pay protections will apply. We will have more information once the awards are final.

We also know another wave of cancellations in the domestic operation will be happening for April and May. There is simply not going to be enough flying available for people based in Philadelphia.

The company is offering VXLOA for six, nine, or twelve months which include medical benefits, the option to buy out your vacation, or defer it to carry over when you return. The window to bid for a VXLOA closes on March 23, 2020, at 2359 DFW time. The company will not contest any unemployment claims. We are aware this has created a lot of angst on whether the state you are based in will approve unemployment. There really is no way to know until a claim is filed to see how it will be handled. All states understand all businesses and industries are impacted by this situation. Many states are including an exception for loss of employment to the COVID-19. You may visit www.pa.gov for information on unemployment eligibility and compensation.

This situation continues to be very fluid and changes rapidly. I will continue to do my best to provide as much information as I can as quickly as possible. There really is no way to sugar coat what is happening right now- the airlines cannot continue to fly airplanes around with few to no passengers. Many of us have seen this movie before, and we never imagined we would see it again.

EAP Services are available to our membership. EAP recently sent out a hotline with information and resources. Click here for more information.

We also recommend you continue to visit the APFA website for updated information. You may also visit the official Association of Professional Flight Attendants Facebook page.

If you have any questions, Tracey and I are available via email and phone.

Kim Kaswinkel
Prphl@apfa.org
215-939-6276

Tracey Montanari
Vpphl@apfa.org
330-622-3444

1004 West Euless Boulevard
Euless, Texas 76040

Phone: (817) 540-0108
Fax: (817) 540-2077

 

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