Negotiations Update March 18-21, 2013
Dear Flight Attendants,
This was a difficult and high-intensity week in negotiations. Right off the bat on Monday we received management’s initial compensation proposal. It was unsatisfying to say the least. Management’s proposal did almost nothing to recognize how low some of our rates are compared to the industry and despite the outstanding performance we deliver year after year.
There is a link below in ‘References’ to the proposed wage scale that shows management’s proposed rates and AFA’s proposed rates (just look at the SWA rates for our proposed rates as they are one and the same). Many if not all of you have already received this information via an email from Vice President of Inflight Andy Schneider sent earlier today, along with two other documents for your consideration. Although all the information in Andy’s email is factually accurate, we trust you will see there is a subtext to the communication. Stay strong and support your Negotiating Committee as we fight on your behalf to be appropriately compensated for our contributions! Just remember the phrase “My Negotiating Committee speaks for me!”
In addition to proposing the Southwest wage rates, AFA’s proposal provides for trip and duty rigs, increases to current premium pays, improved holiday pay and additional holidays, and other upgrades which will increase our take-home pay. Typically in negotiations, each side initially proposes pay positions which are very far apart. Then the parties attempt to get closer together over subsequent passes. We will see what happens in the next session. It is important to remember that rates are not the only components of compensation. Rigs, premium pays, international pay and other forms of compensation all add to our take-home pay.
Section 23: Insurance Benefits and Section 29: Profit Sharing and Retirement. Both of these sections are tied to compensation and we are still significantly apart in these areas.
On a brighter note, we did make significant progress in Sections 32: Attendance Policy, and Section 27: General-Association. We can report that we are a lot closer in those sections.
Section 3: Scope – the very important section which protects our jobs and our work. Management proposed a vastly expanded ability for supervisors and managers to fly our trips, which is clearly a concern for us. Management also rejected our proposed protections from engaging in future onboard product service or sales related to non-consumable items. However, we continue to fight for protections from having to sell duty free and rental cars or vacation packages onboard (just as a few examples) without the ability to negotiate the terms of such work. Discussions are still ongoing in regards to concerns with increased capacity purchase agreement (CPA) flying within Alaska Air Group. While many issues in scope are still hotly contested by us, AFA and management are close to agreeing on some protections for our flying related to who will serve as Flight Attendants on our current and future aircraft.
The bulk of our time was spent in caucus as each side worked separately on individual proposals. We will be back at the table next month on April 15-19th and April 29th –May 2nd.
Now is the time when we all must present a united front to management. As we move forward in this process, wear your AFA pin in solidarity. If you need another one, contact one of your local officers or VOICE committee chair.
Your Negotiating Committee – MEC President Jeffrey Peterson, Brian Tracy, Karina Cameron-Fetters, Jake Jones and AFA Staff Negotiator Paula Mastrangelo
“Four Bases, One Voice”