Dear AFA: May 02, 2014

Date: May 2, 2014
Type: Dear AFA

Good evening Ladies and Gentlemen and welcome to Dear AFA.  We are a democratic, Member driven Union of Flight Attendants for Flight Attendants.  Today is Friday, May 2, 2014 and this is Allen Ward, reporting. I am a Member of Denver Council 9, and I stand with, and will help protect all of my 685 Sisters and Brothers.

No Dues Obligation for 111
Your United Master Executive Council (MEC) consisting of our 15 Local Council Presidents, submitted Agenda Item #11 (Article XI.A.6), at the 42nd Annual AFA Board of Directors (BOD) Meeting.  This Agenda Item brought forward the question:  Should involuntary furloughed Members be required to pay dues if they receive furlough pay?  After failing the first vote in its original form, a substitute amendment was brought forward by the United Master Executive Council and then the Agenda Item was "Adopted as Amended". 

The amendment was passed with the full support of the United Master Executive Council.  Our 111 involuntary furloughed Members will have no dues obligations to AFA, retroactive to April 1, 2014.

Annual Purser Recurrent Closed – Awards by May 7
The 2014 Purser Recurrent program re-bidding closed April 30, 2014 at 0700 Central Time.  Preference months will be awarded in seniority order and awards will appear in your FAINFO screen in field number 7 adjacent to the words "Purser LDR" by May 7, 2014.

The 2014 Purser Recurrent Training will be held in: EWR, GUM, HKG, IAD, IAH, LAX, LHR, ORD & SFO.  Dates for specific locations are in June, August, September, October and November.  Check our website for the specific details.  Additional details will be published in the monthly Bid Package Cover Letter.

United Local ALPA Calls Out Smisek
New York Local United ALPA Leadership has launched an initiative to remove United CEO Jeff Smisek due to his failure to successfully merge and lead at United Airlines.  "It's time to find a new CEO who understands how to run an airline, not just make excuses for his failures," said the top three Officers of ALPA LEC 5, representing New York and Newark-based United pilots, in a strongly worded letter.

The letter was sent April 25, the day after United reported that it lost $489 million excluding items in the first quarter, which produced record profits for both American and Delta.

The three listed United's faults, including these: It has "a disengaged and incompetent CEO is leading a terrible management team." Also, "a merger that should have been completed in three years or less remains incomplete after nearly four years (and) interdepartmental communication and cooperation are nearly nonexistent."

Also, "terrible employee morale and excessive outsourcing have combined with chronic operational and IT issues to drive away our elite frequent fliers in droves, driving our revenue and (passenger revenue per available seat mile) downward," the letter said.

"United should be the industry leader, with the largest population and origin/destination traffic demand in our hubs and as the largest airline across both the Atlantic and the Pacific," they wrote. "Instead, we are always the laggard. As in past quarterly updates, we once again hear excuses as to why United is unable to perform while we watch all of our competitors earn high and record profits."

The letter to United comes just weeks before the United Airlines Board of Directors meeting.

United’s Unanticipated Increase in Block Hours
As a result of recent unanticipated changes by United’s Aircraft Scheduling, Flight Operations and Technical Operations (Maintenance), Inflight Scheduling has advised us of the need to add about 1,300 block hours into the pre-merger United domestic-fleet schedules.  This additional flying will involve the 757 and A319/320 Airbus fleets.  During discussions with the company, we advocated for the prospect of recalling Flight Attendants from involuntary furlough status however, and because the nature of this additional flying is temporary according to United and, to a certain extent, fluid, United management will instead, invoke the provisions of the Partnership Letter of Agreement. 

Consistent with the terms of the Partnership Letter of Agreement, Section L:

  • Flight Attendants participating in Partnership 11 who would like to pick up open flying during the June schedule month should contact to have their monthly maximum increased in their line of flying, or,
  • Flight Attendants at domestic locations, including HNL, who are participating in Partnership 11 may elect to dissolve their Partnership for the June schedule month.   If you elect to dissolve your Partnership for the June schedule, you should send an e-mail to no later than noon Central Time on Monday, May 12 from your corporate email account.  The email should include the name and file number of both partners. The partnership will be dissolved for June and each Flight Attendant will be awarded flying based on her/his seniority.  Flight Attendants dissolving their partnership for June will receive full accrual for vacation and sick leave.

That’s all for tonight and thank you for calling.  Through strength and solidarity, we will continue building our collective future.  After all, it’s our future.

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