Representing the Flight Attendants
of American Airlines

Representing the Flight Attendants of American Airlines

8.05.21 – APFA CLT Base Brief – September 2021 Allocations

Thursday, August 5, 2021

September 2021 Allocations

Good Day CLT Flight Attendants,

We continue to address the trip construction model the Company has adopted for several months during our monthly allocations calls. We have argued for shorter duty days and longer rest, cutting the sit/connection times, the five-leg days, the long duty days followed by a short rest, the lack of commutable trips, and placing behind the clock flying into regular trips. We have screamed about the high reserve numbers, getting our displaced flight attendants back home, and constructing trips that limit exposure to the COVID-19 global pandemic.

We have complained about:

  • Commuting Problems
  • Hot Airplanes
  • Weather Events that Meltdown the Whole System
  • Disruptive Passengers and Flight Attendant Assaults
  • Staffing Issues
  • Hotel and Transportation Issues
  • Constant Reschedules
  • Continued Contract Violations

 

The Company responded by saying they needed maximum productivity and programmed the Optimizer to make trips based solely on cost, not a human element. They said they needed every dime in one breath and announced hiring and increasing management in the next. They have chosen to discount everything their employees have tried to tell them since the beginning of this whole pandemic.

This week, The APFA Leadership decided not to participate in the allocations call. They refuse to listen to us, and the crumbling of the network continues. They haven’t listened to us, and we are sick of excuses and empty promises.

Here are how the numbers break down for Charlotte in September. The system will decrease flying due to the loss of some seasonal markets like NIPD flights. Charlotte did see a small decrease, there were many trips, but many of them only ran once or twice the entire month.

Our available headcount is 1,947. We will have 1,576 Lineholders and 371 Reserves (19.1 %). Our line average is set for 78.7. Our Reserve count has finally come down but remains high for the system overall.

We have 312 EVLOA Flight Attendants returning in November and December. 189 EVLOA returns are scheduled for November, and 123 are scheduled for a December return. The Company has stated they will allow any of these flight attendants to return in October if they want to. Returning flight attendants will have the first month they return as their reserve month if their seniority is slated to serve a reserve rotation in that month. As long as our reserve numbers remain reasonable, the returning flight attendants should relieve the higher seniorities that have had to serve Reserve these past few months. We will have high Reserve numbers in December and January. The Company bases Reserve numbers on historical numbers they have slated for Reserve, not actual usage for those months.

The trips break down like this:

  • 1 days will make up 24% of our trips
  • 2 days will make up 40% of our trips
  • 3 days will make up 13% of our trips
  • 4 days will make up 8% of our trips
  • ODANs will make up 6.5% of our trips
  • Traditional red eyes will make up 2% of our trips
  • 2/3 days will make up 4.5% of our trips

 

Pink eyes, Bullets, and 3/4 days all come in with just a handful and less than 1% of the trips.

The only real shift was a decrease in 4 days in August to more one days in September. The 4 days were more commutable as a result.

In all the other categories we track each month, the trips got worse. There was an increase in 4 to 5 leg days, an increase in sit times, an increase in 13-hour duty days, building in red eyes to 3-day trips, and an increase in long duty days followed by short rest breaks. As you can see, our efforts to improve the quality of our trips fell on deaf ears. The company has decided on a path of “Paper Productivity” even as they watch these trips fall apart day after day. Our frustration with the company on these issues and many more was the deciding factor to boycott the allocations call this month.

RDU picked up a few extra trips, but the basic trip construction did not change.

The timeline for September bidding is as follows:

Every day we hear stories about how Management has let their employees down:

  • No hotel rooms
  • Broken aircraft
  • Delays
  • Cancellations
  • Waiting on Pilots
  • Crew Scheduling violating our Contract
  • Hot airplanes
  • Waiting on hold with Crew Scheduling for hours
  • Crews spending the night in airports

 

Our passengers have had to deal with this mess, and their anger is often taken out on us as we are the front line for this airline. We also hear the stories of crews that went the extra mile and took care of their passengers for hours or pushing wheelchairs so that someone won’t miss a connection, we have the best flight attendants in the industry, and we show it every day, even under these current strains. But how long can this go on before there is a breaking point? Apps and third-party contractors are not the answer. Tweaking the programming isn’t working either. Management is pushing the entire system and our passengers to a breaking point and has gone well beyond its employees’ physical well-being breaking point. They keep placing straws on the camel’s back while telling you, “You’re not alone,” “things are getting better,” Trust us.” They act like it’s business-as-usual, piling on the discipline points or calling mandatory meetings for the minor infractions as if more discipline will solve the problems. When we need to hear more stories of our flight attendants going above and beyond, when motivation and respect for what we do every day are required, we get finger-pointing and the blame game. We get held to a higher standard than Management itself, yet who is the first to pat themselves on the back and reward themselves when something improves.

Frustration left the room a long time ago. This is pure anger at this point. Decisions made six months ago are catching up to us now. Decisions will impact us six months from now, with the COVID delta variant taking over the headlines. Who knows where the industry will be in six months. We know that AA won’t be prepared for it, and we will once again be on the front lines.

The best way you can prepare is to be proactive, mitigate your exposure- protect yourselves, both in a health sense and a professional feel. Know your contractual rights. We have put out hotlines to guide you through rescheduling. You can click here to familiarize yourself with your legalities.

Report scheduling abuse by filling out this Rescheduling Issues Form. Review JCBA Section 10.J. You may not be able to predict the future, but you can protect yourself. The best way to do that is to prepare for anything by educating yourself.

We are here if you need help. Give us a call at 704-665-7474.

Take care of yourselves and each other. ~ The Charlotte APFA Team

In Solidarity,

Scott Hazlewood
APFA CLT Base President

shazlewood@apfa.org

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