Furlough mitigation resources
AFA has compiled the following furlough mitigation resources for easy reference.
Company resources (AAG SSO required)
- All furlough mitigation options
- Early Out (EO)
- Extended Leaves of Absence (ELOAs) and Enhanced Voluntary Furloughs (EVFs)
- October 2020 Furlough Mitigations Letter of Agreement (7/8/2020) [signatures pending]
- Reduction in Force 2020 Sideletter of Agreement (7/8/2020) [signatures pending]
- JCBA Section 18 [Reduction in Force] and Section 27 [General – Association]
Combined resources – “Early Out and Leave Options” informational sessions
Management is hosting and AFA will also be co-participating in upcoming “Early Out and Leave Options” informational sessions in which all furlough mitigations will be addressed: Early Outs, Extended Leaves of Absence and Enhanced Voluntary Furloughs.
Available Sessions – An individual calendar invite has been sent by management for each event. Please join us if you have questions!
Tue 7/14 @ 12pm – 1pm PT
Thu 7/16 @ 4pm – 5pm PT
Tue 7/21 @ 2pm – 3pm PT
Everyone wants to know the target numbers for the Early Out program, Extended Leaves of Absence and Enhanced Voluntary Furloughs. The MEC shared that feedback with management prior to publication of yesterday’s email announcing the EOs and other furlough mitigation options. According to the Company’s Early out Q&A (AAG SSO required), management estimates needing approximately 600 Flight Attendants to take the Early Out.
In our June 5th “A Message About Current Events, and Planning for the Future” communication, the MEC projected that Alaska Airlines will possibly need 35%-50% less Flight Attendants systemwide—at least temporarily—beginning on October 1. We now project the impact to be fairly significantly less, but the MEC cannot say more due to non-disclosure agreements (NDAs). However, the MEC will continue to press management to be more forthcoming with projections as soon as possible.
Company Early Out
Management has now released the details of the Company Early Out program (AAG SSO required). As mentioned in the June 30th edition of the AFA Update, AFA did not negotiate this Early Out package. AFA approached management back in March regarding our interest in negotiating an Early Out, but management declined our offer.
AFA’s assessment is that the Company’s EO package will not attain even close to the desired number of takers. Candidly, the Master Executive Council (MEC) is disappointed in the Company’s EO; we had hoped the Company’s EO would be more in line with industry leading Flight Attendant EOs like at Southwest Airlines. However, the EO will interest some Flight Attendants who were already considering retirement or who are interested in early retirement.
Involuntary Furlough (IVF) Mitigations
No lower line averages
Pursuant to §18.A [Involuntary Furlough Mitigation], AFA and management have been working on furlough mitigations over the past two weeks. After careful consideration and in consultation with industry experts, AFA has declined to lower the line averages or adjust the line value range. AFA already lowered the minimum domicile average line value from 78 TFP to 75 TFP in the 2014-2019 CBA, which allows individual lines to be built up to 10 TFP lower at 65 TFP. Our analysis is that the scale of anticipated reduced staffing is so great and the duration of lower lines so uncertain that these mitigations would be unacceptable to the majority and seen as a concession.
October 2020 Furlough Mitigations Letter of Agreement
Furlough mitigation enhancements and clarifications that are in addition to Extended Leaves of Absence and Voluntary Furlough provision in Section 18.A [Involuntary Furlough Mitigations]:
- Extended Leaves of Absence of 12-month duration (ELOA-12) -> No change to contract
- COBRA-eligible for healthcare
- Regular 480 unpaid credit of 1.333 TFP per day
- Base guarantee
- See contract for additional details
- “Enhanced” Voluntary Furloughs of 6-, 9-, 12- and 15-month durations (EVF-6, EVF-9, EVF-12 and EVF-15)
- Company-paid healthcare premiums
- Double 480 credit
- Base guarantee on EVF-6 & EVF-9 (contractual voluntary furloughs have no base guarantee)
- No base guarantee on EVF-12 or EVF-15 unless recalled June 2021 or earlier
- Productivity Premium Program eligibility on ELOA & EVFs (and on IVF via separate email acknowledgement from management)
- Recall procedures
- Order of recall clarified: IVF followed by EVF (followed by ELOAs requested but not required)
- “Live” recall or bypass form
- Full-time student bypass for the remainder of the term while on ELOA, EVF or IVF (proof of enrollment in accredited college or university required)
- Staffing Adjustment Leaves (SALs) -> Enhancement to §15.B [Staffing Adjustment…]
- Offered one month at a time (in order to avoid the perception of seniority violations) but may be awarded consecutively
- Double 480 credit
- Company-paid healthcare premiums
- FAs on involuntary furlough may choose to remain current by attending regulatory training (RT/RQ)
- Company-paid healthcare premiums during the month of training
- Out of domicile provisions if FA is required to take training out of domicile (e.g. SANFAs)
- Positive space Company Business travel provided to and from domicile if required
- Unemployment insurance (UI)
- Company will not contest UI
- Company will provide support letter to the FA
- “Reconvene clause” in case legislation (e.g. potential extension to the CARES Act) is subsequently passed that prevents IVFs
Reduction in Force 2020 Sideletter of Agreement
AFA and management recognized that references to “seniority” in §18.A [Involuntary Furlough Mitigations] and §18.K [Involuntary Furlough Seniority Retention] required clarification to reflect intent and established practice:
- Occupational Seniority always accrues: FAs always receive scheduled pay increases and are not negatively impacted in bidding seniority or relative seniority while on any type of leave or furlough.
- Company Seniority always accrues: FAs always receive scheduled vacation accrual increases and are not negatively impacted for non-rev seniority while on any type of leave or furlough.
- Longevity: 401(k) vesting and retirement eligibility are ‘frozen’ (i.e. retained but not accrued) while on certain types of leave or while on furlough.
The parties clarified the procedures for returning from an Extended Leave of Absence under §18.A:
- Domicile protection while on ELOA and recall in Occupational Seniority order
The parties will allow Flight Attendants to conduct Union Business (UB) or Company Business (CB) while on a voluntary furlough under §27.AA [Union Business and/or Company Business…]:
- Flight Attendants who routinely conduct UB and/or CB work may be potentially willing to take voluntary furloughs, and this provision would allow them to do so while continuing to provide necessary services to the Company and/or to the Association.
- Examples: Inflight Training Instructors, Special Project work Flight Attendants and union reps
Tell Congress: Extend the CARES Act
If not enough Flight Attendants voluntarily take the Early Out, Extended Leave of Absence or Enhanced Voluntary Furlough, then at least some of our sisters and brothers will be involuntarily furloughed starting in October. Consequently, it is vitally important that each and every one of you help AFA-CWA, the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA) and the Transport Workers Union (TWU) Local 556 achieve a six-month extension to the CARES Act in order to protect Flight Attendant jobs. Tell Congress to keep our industry intact by extending the CARES Act!
These are extremely difficult and stressful times. Please remember that your Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Committee is always available as a support resource. As your direct representative on the MEC, your LEC president is available to answer questions or concerns that you may have about all the information presented here. Contact information for your respective LEC president can be found by clicking here. We hope to see you at one of the upcoming “Early Out and Leave Options” informational sessions on 7/14, 7/16 or 7/21!
Your MEC – Jeffrey Peterson, Brian Palmer, Linda Christou, Matt Cook, Terry Taylor, Steve Maller, Melissa Osborne, Tim Green and Brice McGee