- Our AFA Scheduling Committee Chairpersons met on Tuesday, August 22 to discuss their ongoing program of work to represent Flight Attendants interests related to lineholder scheduling.
- The Committee also met with management to receive updates and discuss issues and problems that Flight Attendants are experiencing with scheduling, pairings, and bidding.
- Your Local Scheduling Committee is available to answer questions, provide clarification, or help to resolve any lineholder scheduling-related issues. Please don’t hesitate to reach out!
On Tuesday, August 25, our AFA Scheduling Committee Chairpersons met to discuss their ongoing work to represent our Flight Attendants and push for improvements in our workplace. Representing you at the meeting were Heather Reier (ANC), Rita Tillou (SEA), Melodie Anderes (PDX), Jaqui Bellenie (SFO), Natalie Codd (LAX), and Kitty Cohen (SAN). Also present were MEC Scheduling Committee Vice Chairperson—Pairing Construction Karen Ferrell, MEC Scheduling Committee Vice Chairperson—PBS Virginia Fritz. The committee met with Managing Director of Operations Staffing and Resource Management Brittany Audette, Director of Inflight Crew Scheduling Sara Cook, Director of Crew Planning Mike Ostler, Manager of Crew Planning Trisha Bennett, and other management representatives from Crew Planning.
The Committee is next scheduled to meet on September 26, 2023.
Topics of Discussion
The committee reviewed a number of items both during internal AFA-only conversation and when meeting with management. Some items discussed include:
- Block hours reduction. For the fall of 2023, we will see line averages reduced. You should notice a difference when bidding your September schedule. Line averages could be 75-78 depending on the amount of leaves offered by base.
- JCTE/Crew Access update. We are expecting a new update (7.4 MR13) for filters and “trade handshake” in September 2023.
- Leaves. Management has reviewed the anticipated block hours and decided to offer leaves. This is a change from last month’s update. If you are interested in a leave of absence please review the recent bulletin. Management is reviewing all options of staffing adjustment leaves (SAL) and Low Bid lines to determine the best business decision.
- Pilot Retiming Block In/Out. A bulletin bundle was issued from management providing a recent update on this issue and a plan for implementation in a future crew access update. Please continue to file the appropriate forms until we install a permanent resolution. As of today there were 873 inquiries and 163 approvals.
- Base Turns. Each month, Flight Attendants are surprised when they combine two sequences over 10 hours 30 minutes and discover some of their contractual legalities are waived. If you are adding sequences, together refer to Section 8.T. There are also issues with splitting base turns that require Crew Scheduling assistance.
- Vacation Bidding. Prepare for 2024 vacation bids. Find dates for 1st round bidding, 2nd round bidding, and Open Time the in bulletin bundle.
- Section 11.E.1.c. “ISA” marker. Unavailable for self-assignment. When Flight Attendants are trading into/out of trips with this label, the premium will disappear. Flight Attendants can contact Crew Scheduling if they notice a trip in Open Time that is labeled as “ISA” but doesn’t show premium and request removal of the ISA or require the premium be added back onto the trip. Crew Scheduling has the discretion to choose which action they choose.
- Hotel wait times. If you are waiting in excess of over one (1) hour for a hotel, please ensure you are keeping in contact with Crew Scheduling and opening a ticket with AFA through the AFA Alaska Online Support Center.
- Charter Retimes. LAX BRO Charters and retimes require pay protection and rebid. There were some tickets opened regarding compensation and contractual requirements. These are being reviewed and resolved. Reminder to know your contractual obligations and compensation.
What The Committee Is Working On
- NavBlue. The PBS subcommittee is preparing to have more base sits and presentations for Flight Attendants. We will provide dates/times/locations in a future update. Stay tuned.
- Pairings Survey. It’s been a few years since we submitted a survey on pairing construction. We are discussing survey questions and the possibility of a virtual session or town hall. Meeting with management set for June 5, 2023 A follow up meeting needs to be scheduled. There is no update or ETA.
- Teaming. Crew Planning is reviewing pairing construction and the optimization of teaming. Teaming attempts to keep costs low and crew together (Flight Attendants and pilots) for multiple segments within a sequence. The system currently teams around 10-15%. The new enhancements would increase this in the range of 20-35% for the winter operations.
- In and Backs. These are flights that follow the crew and aircraft. Network Planning and Crew Planning are reviewing initiatives that would help us restart the operation when crews are stranded and flights are canceled. Management will start reviewing the 2023/2024 IROPs plan in September/October.
- Chime Communications. Flight Attendants could chat with crew scheduling via app/Microsoft Teams to alleviate phone calls. It would be Flight Attendant-initiated contact. This is in the early stages of development and needs to be discussed with Alaska Airlines Labor Relations management and AFA MEC leadership.
We Want to Hear From You!
Do you have feedback for the committee, concerns you’d like to share, or items that you’d like brought up with management? Please let us know! Your Local Scheduling Committee is your voice to management. You can open a support request on the AFA Alaska Online Support Center or contact us directly using the information on the Scheduling Committee page of the AFA Alaska website.