Master Executive Council (MEC)
- AFA and management recently agreed to a defined process for when a debrief meeting with management needs to be conducted following an operational safety event.
- The agreement ensures protections for Flight Attendants while guaranteeing pay, duty day limitations, and AFA representation.
- Details can be found in the Operational Safety Debriefs Letter of Agreement (LOA).
In 2019, AFA filed grievance number 36-99-2-170-19, which alleged management’s violation of section 19.A of the collective bargaining agreement. The violation was related to an incident where management conducted a debrief meeting with Flight Attendants while they were still on duty following a slide deployment incident. As there was no contractual basis for management to conduct a meeting to investigate a work-related event with Flight Attendants outside of the procedures outlined in 19.A, the grievance alleged that contractual rights to AFA representation and investigatory meeting pay were violated.
The grievance was denied by management and subsequently scheduled for arbitration in June 2020. As the arbitration date approached, management indicated they were interested in settling the grievance in lieu of arbitration. Discussions between AFA and management ensued and a settlement-in-concept was reached, which the MEC approved at the time.
Following the conceptual agreement, AFA proposed a letter of agreement (LOA) that codified the settlement in detail. Unfortunately, turnover in a number of key management positions resulted in setbacks as new managers needed to brought up to speed with the history of the settlement and background of what had been discussed. To compound the situation, the aircraft evacuation of flight 751 in Seattle on August 23, 2021 revealed some unforeseen issues with the debrief process that required further discussion and incorporation into the proposed settlement.
Operational Safety Debriefs Letter of Agreement (LOA)
AFA and management were recently able to reach consensus on the details of the LOA, which serves as final settlement of the original grievance. AFA LOA 2023-01-17 (Operational Safety Debriefs) establishes a process for management to speak directly to Flight Attendants who have been involved in a significant safety-related event while providing benefits and protections to Flight Attendants, including:
- Minimum pay of 4 TFP for participating in an Operational Safety Debrief, in addition to any Minimum Pay Rules and pay protection due.
- Limitations on how long Operational Safety Debriefs are, when they must begin, and maximum duty day.
- Guarantee that any conversations are non-disciplinary in nature and any information obtained cannot be used in disciplinary actions (including protections under ASAP if an ASAP report is filed timely).
- The right to AFA representation and involvement in conversations.
- An established process to handle any follow-up training.
For complete details, please click here to view the complete LOA. You can also find the LOA on your IMD in GoodReader in the ASFA Supplemental > Collective Bargaining Agreement folder.
If you have any questions about the Operational Safety Debriefs LOA, please contact your LEC President.
Cheryl Gunderson says
What is considered a triggering event?
Jeffrey Peterson (MEC President) says
From the definitions in A.1 of the Operational Safety Debriefs LOA:
So far, Operational Safety Debriefs have occurred for higher-level safety incidents such as an aircraft evacuation and partial or full slide deployments.