This message is for pre-merger Alaska Flight Attendants
In the “Early Push Program” membership release dated May 11, 2017, the Master Executive Council (MEC) communicated our concerns about that program. Unfortunately, the situation did not significantly improve in the weeks following that communication, so AFA filed Grievance No. 36-99-2-37-17 “Violation of §8.D.1 Early Push Program” on June 1, 2017. In fact, you provided the MEC with numerous examples of posted boarding times that had been adjusted to more than 45 minutes prior to departure, which, in our opinion, is a clear violation of §8.D.1 of the contract.
AFA requested Alaska Airlines management to investigate the circumstances surrounding when the Company altered Flight Attendants’ scheduled departures 10 minutes earlier than scheduled, thereby pressuring Flight Attendants to arrive at the aircraft 55 minutes prior to departure rather than 45 minutes. AFA received great news on Tuesday: Management sustained the grievance, which means management agreed the contract was violated.
In the grievance response addressed to MEC Grievance Committee Chairperson Stephanie Adams, management writes:
Stephanie, we have asked airport services to move from a 10-minute early boarding to 5 minutes in the case of early pushes only. By pushing this from D-50 to D-45, we will be contractually compliant. Therefore, we requested and were guaranteed that departures be posted no greater than 5 minutes early instead of 10 effective immediately.
Management affirms that you are under no contractual obligation to arrive at the aircraft earlier than 45 minutes prior to scheduled departure. AFA continues to take the position that it is acceptable to begin boarding right at 45 minutes prior to departure for “early push” flights—but only if all required safety checks and the Flight Attendant briefing have been completed and the entire Flight Attendant crew voluntarily agrees without feeling pressured. Allowing boarding to commence right at 45 minutes prior to scheduled departure adds a few extra minutes to help out the operation (as compared to regular boarding).
Now that the grievance has been sustained, contact one of your local AFA representatives or file a report at http://support.afaalaska.org as soon as possible if you believe your van time has been adjusted in anticipation of an early push, your report time is changed or if you experience pressure to board earlier than 45 minutes prior to departure.
Your MEC – Jeffrey Peterson, Brian Palmer, Linda Christou, Lisa Pinkston, Laura Masserant, Cathy Gwynn, Melissa Osborne, Tim Green, Brice McGee; MEC Grievance Committee Chairperson Stephanie Adams, MEC Grievance Committee Member Christina Frees; and MEC Scheduling Committee Chairperson Zac Weeks