- When AFA and management disagree on a contractual issue, it doesn’t necessarily become a grievance right away. Most times, there is an intermediate step taken to try to resolve the issue.
- Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) brings together decision makers from AFA leadership, inflight management, and labor relations management to try to work the issue out. Scheduling Review Board (SRB) is a similar process that involves AFA Representatives and Crew Scheduling management.
- If everyone can’t agree on a resolution, our AFA Grievance Committee can still file a formal grievance and address the issue through the contractual grievance process.
As we know, our collective bargaining agreement provides many protections related to our working conditions, pay, and benefits. Our AFA Grievance Committee and other AFA Representatives work constantly to ensure that management is doing right by our Flight Attendants according to the language in the contract. Sometimes, however, disagreements arise between AFA and management about how a particular provision in the contract should be applied or whether or not a contractual violation occurred in the first place.
Our contract provides an established process for handling disagreements such as these. Section 19 [Grievance Procedures] and section 20 [Board of Adjustment] of our CBA, often referred to collectively as the contractual grievance process, outline the procedures for how disputes about contractual language and interpretation are handled. But before a matter is referred to the grievance process, there is often an intermediate step taken to try to work the issue out with management.
Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR)
The Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) process is intended to give AFA Representatives and management the opportunity to resolve issues more quickly and with more flexibility while saving on the expenses related to processing a grievance. ADR meetings are held every two weeks and include the AFA MEC Grievance Committee and management counterparts in Inflight management and the Labor Relations department. During these meetings, the group reviews each case and attempts to work through issues that would otherwise be forced to the grievance process directly.
Scheduling Review Board (SRB)
Alongside ADR is a parallel process that specifically addresses scheduling-related issues. The Scheduling Review Board (SRB) meets once per month and includes representatives from our AFA MEC Grievance, Scheduling, and Reserve Committees along with Crew Scheduling management. The goal of SRB is the same—work to resolve issues more quickly than the grievance process would allow while achieving the best possible outcome for Flight Attendants.
How Do I Know If My Issue Has Been Referred to ADR/SRB?
If you’ve reported a concern to AFA and the issue has been referred to ADR or SRB, the status of your ticket on the AFA Alaska Online Support Center will show as “escalated to ADR” or “escalated to SRB” accordingly. The AFA Representative assigned to your case will continue to be your point of contact and provide you with updates following ADR/SRB meetings. Our MEC Grievance Committee also maintains a log of current and past ADR items that can be viewed on the Grievance Committee page of the AFA Alaska website (click the “view the ADR log” button under the ADR process heading).
What If We Can’t Work it Out?
While an issue is being addressed through ADR or SRB, the time limitations outlined in the contract for when a grievance must be filed are placed on hold. This ensures that the Flight Attendant and our contractual rights are protected as we try to resolve the issue. If we aren’t able to reach an agreement with management that is acceptable to everyone involved, our AFA Grievance Committee maintains the right to address the issue by filing a formal grievance.
If you have questions about the ADR process, don’t hesitate to contact your Local Grievance Committee Chairperson. For any questions about the SRB process, contact your Local Scheduling Committee Chairperson or Local Reserve Committee Chairperson.