Monday, November 20, 2023
Negotiations Update #39:
APFA Requests Release from the National Mediation Board
This morning, APFA National President Julie Hedrick sent a letter to the members of the National Mediation Board (NMB) requesting that APFA and the Company be released into a thirty-day cooling-off period. This request follows extensive bargaining over our contract, which became amendable in December 2019.
Your Negotiating Committee briefed the APFA Board of Directors Friday afternoon on the status of negotiations and recommended that the Board approve a request to be sent to the NMB to be released into a thirty-day cooling-off period. The Board of Directors unanimously approved the recommendation and resolution to request a release to strike.
Last week, in our federally supervised bargaining in Phoenix, management showed up with no new economic proposal and no plan to settle our contract. That is precisely why we set a firm deadline (read here) for the Company, as we will not allow them to delay these negotiations further.
The Company is holding on to its economic framework included in its September 2023 proposal (read here). As we have repeatedly made clear at the bargaining table and through the extraordinary solidarity of Flight Attendants, we are not interested in their proposal, which does not adequately compensate Flight Attendants for our role in keeping this carrier flying through good times and bad.
We are taking this step because Flight Attendants are tired of waiting and tired of the overall disrespect from American Airlines. Across the country, Workers are standing up against corporate greed and demanding improvements. We are prepared and willing to do what it takes to secure the agreement we deserve.
We must be clear: the National Mediation Board has sole discretion to determine whether we are released. Until we are released to engage in self-help following a thirty-day cooling-off period, we cannot engage in any strike activity or other self-help, including refusals to perform work, etc (more info here).
We understand that Flight Attendants have many questions and concerns about the timeline of a strike at American Airlines and the steps we should be taking to prepare. We will be releasing more information as we proceed to the next steps in the process, including what Flight Attendants can do to prepare for a potential strike at American Airlines.
Continue to wear your red WAR pin, red lanyard, and bag tags until we secure the contract we’ve earned.
Your APFA Negotiating Committee
Kelly J. Hagan
Joe Burns, Lead Negotiating Attorney