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E-Lines: August 23, 2019

Date: August 23, 2019

Changes to the Route Network Announced This Week

United Airlines announced this week an expanded international schedule from its hubs in Chicago, Denver, New York/Newark and San Francisco to include inauguration of service to service to Nice, France; Palermo, Italy; and Curacao.   In addition, there will be more options when planning travel to Europe with additional flights to Amsterdam; London; Frankfurt, Germany; and Zurich.  Resumption of seasonal summer service to popular destinations including Athens, Greece; Naples, Italy; Porto, Portugal; and Barcelona, Spain will occur earlier in the year.

United management also announced their intent to suspend service between ORD and HKG following the conclusion of the HKG to ORD flight on September 9, 2019. In addition, the company has announced their plan to accelerate the discontinuation of GUM-HKG service with the final flight now scheduled for October 14, 2019. 

United reiterated our commitment to the HKG station where service has been provided for more than thirty (30) years. HKG will continue to be served from EWR and, after October 26, twice daily from SFO.

The company reported a reduction in travel demand between EWR and EZE (Buenos Aires) and has announced their plan to suspend service following completion of the EZE – EWR flight on October 26, 2019.   Daily non-stop service between IAH and EZE will continue to provide customers with connections to EZE. 

Check the Semi-Annual System Seniority List Published July 25, 2019

Our Semi-Annual System Seniority List was published as of July 25, 2019. As provided under Section 14.C. of our Contract, the list shall be made available at all stations where Flight Attendants are domiciled for their review.

If you believe that there is an error or omission that affects your seniority you should contact your Local Council representative immediately. Additional information is available in our JCBA, section 14.C and on our website, unitedafa.org.

9th Annual FADAP Conference Concludes in Baltimore
MEC EAP/Professional Standards Committee 

The 9th annual Flight Attendant Drug and Alcohol Program (FADAP) conference concluded this week in Baltimore, Maryland. This year, representatives from across the system were in attendance. Participants included Flight Attendants, Flight Attendants in recovery, Employee Assistance Representatives and members of management. 

Again, this year, United management representatives attended the FADAP Conference and participated in the events each day. We commend our colleagues who continue to step forward to do this important work on behalf of our Flight Attendant community. We also want to recognize those management representatives who participated to improve their understanding of the value this program brings in saving Flight Attendant lives. We thank all of the participants in this year’s program for their commitment as advocates for all Members.

Building relationships and working together.  It’s powerful stuff!

September 11, 2019 Memorial Services and Remembrance Ribbons

We will Never Forget September 11, 2001.Thousands of lives were lost that tragic day, including passengers, Pilots, and Flight Attendants aboard the four highjacked aircraft. United Airlines Flight 93, American Airlines Flight 77, United Airlines Flight 175 and American Airlines Flight 11. We will Always keep their memories in our hearts, and will never think about the 11th day of September without also thinking of our beloved friends and flying partners that perished at the hands of some of the worst terrorism the United States as ever suffered. 

In recognition of the 18th anniversary of this tragic day, memorial ceremonies will be conducted at locations across our nation. We encourage you to attend a ceremony in your area, alongside your MEC Officers, your fellow Flight Attendants, and the friends and families of those whose lives were lost in these devastating terrorist attacks. If you aren’t able to be part of a local Memorial service, simply take a moment of silence in honor of our heroes in aviation, as well as those first responders and anyone touched by the tragedy of September 11, 2001. Visit www.unitedafa.org  for information on September 11 Memorial services that will be taking place across the system.

Additionally, AFA will be providing memorial ribbons to be worn behind your AFA pin during the month of September. There will also be a select number of commemorative 9/11 memorial ribbon pins based on domicile availability. Wear them as a remembrance of our flying partners, family, and friends as a reminder that they will always be with us. 

Look for memorial ribbons and AFA pins in your local domicile in late August or contact your Local Executive Council to request one. 

CCS Line Security – Option to Block your Line
MEC Communications Committee

Flight Attendants should be aware that they have the ability to block their flying schedule; blocking a schedule essentially hides it from view. Once done, other Flight Attendants will not have the ability to view your Master Schedule or any of the information listed on it.  At the same time, once you block your schedule, you will not have the ability to view the Master Schedule of any other Flight Attendants while you line is secured. A Flight Attendant who wishes to block her/his line can accomplish this by following these steps in CCS. 

1)   Log in to your CCS Account.

2)   Click the drop-down menu in the upper right-hand corner with your “Name”.

3)   Select the “General Settings” option. 

4)   Once on the General Settings page select “Schedule Opting Election” from the drop-down menu.

5)   Select "View" to allow other employees to see your schedule, or "Restrict" to hide your schedule. You may change your preference only for the next bid period. 

Once a Flight Attendant’s line has been blocked, she/he cannot unblock it until the next Calendar month award cycle. They still have the ability to trade trips with open time and with a fellow Flight Attendant, despite their schedule being hidden from view. 

For more information about CCS contact your Local Executive Council Representatives.

Involvement Is Power- AFA Structure, Get Involved!
MEC Communications Committee 

The power of our Union rests with each Member of AFA-CWA.  Our AFA-CWA Constitution and Bylaws defines a Union structure and policy that is often recognized as one of the most democratic in the labor movement. 

We recognize that not every Member is able or willing to attend every Union meeting or can be informed about every issue affecting United Flight Attendants. It is for this reason we have a representative democracy that ensures we have peers who can represent us in every issue.

Every three years we elect our Local Officers. You elect your Local AFA-CWA Officers including your Local President, Vice President, Secretary and Council Representatives. They are your peers as United Flight Attendants and based in your domicile. These are the people you go to when you have a question, when you need some assistance or when you want to suggest change.

Click Here to read moreabout the Structure of AFA and how a single Member has the power to bring forward ideas to change the direction of our Union, to elect the leaders of our Union and to hold any position within the structure of our Union.

Drug and Alcohol Testing Pay and Random Testing Procedures
EAP/ Professional Standards Committee FADAP 

As a reminder, Section 4.F of our JCBA, outlines the contractual provision for Drug and Alcohol Testing compensation. Compensation for testing will be administered on a calendar verses bid month basis. For example, if you were tested December 30 and 31 you will see payment for the testing on your mid-month January pay advice. This payment is itemized only on your Pay Advice and cannot be seen as part of your Pay Register. For additional information concerning testing pay review section 4.F of our JCBA. 

Additionally, On April 12 of this year your AFA Employee Assistance Program / Professional Standards Committee published detailed information concerning the Department of Transportation (DOT) federally mandated Random Drug and Alcohol Testing Procedures that allows for unannounced and random testing for all Flight Attendants. In addition to DOT Drug and Alcohol Testing Flight Attendants can also be subject to company drug testing. Therefore, Flight Attendants based in both domestic and international bases can be subject to Drug and alcohol testing depending on the type of test being administered. We strongly encourage all Flight Attendants to review the publication and for additional information and details concerning Drug and Alcohol Testing visit the EAP/ Professional Standards page on unitedafa.org or the FADAP.org website where you will find several documents containing information on DOT Drug and Alcohol testing.

Note: Although there is no limitation as to the number of times Flight Attendants can be tested there is also no limitation on the number of times our JCBA contractual provision in Section 4.F., 
Drug and Alcohol Testing Pay will be paid. 

AFA Rejoins Inflight Safety Action Program (ISAP) Effective August 29
MEC Safety Heath of Security Committee

Last week AFA announced our participation in a new Inflight Safety Action Program (ISAP).  After a series of meetings with Inflight management we are proud to report that we have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with United Airlines and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).  Effective August 29th, AFA will rejoin ISAP as a full program participant and member of the Event Review Committee (ERC).

ISAP is a safety partnership between the FAA, United, and AFA, designed to help identify safety risks that might otherwise go undetected. ISAP provides a forum for Flight Attendants to report safety-related events and risks without fear of punitive action, when the appropriate criteria are met. 

Prior to signing the new MOU, our advocacy on behalf of our Membership with Inflight management was to create processes that will ensure ISAP is a successful and robust reporting system and one that benefits Flight Attendants. Over the course of the next several months, expect to receive additional information on ISAP.

Reminder - New Required CBT Modules Due by October 6 

Inflight management notified Flight Attendants in the August 7, 2019 Inflight Services Weekly of a new series of six required CBT modules that must be completed by October 6, 2019. 

Additional details including deadlines and pay are available on our website, unitedafa.org. 

Reserve Availability Rules on the Last Day of the Bid Month
Section 8.H.

On the last day of the old bid month, there a special Reserve telephone availability and assignment rules that apply to Flight Attendants who are going on and off Reserve.  Said another way, transitioning between Lineholder and Reserve status or vice-versa. 

  • Flight Attendants going on Reserve:  that is, a Flight Attendant on a Lineholder day off on the last day of the old bid month and who has been assigned to Ready Reserve status for the first day of the new bid month is required to be telephone available starting at 2000 for assignment to pairings departing after midnight

  • Flight Attendants going off Reserve:  that is, a Flight Attendant who is on a Reserve day of availability on the last day of the old bid month and will be transitioning to a Lineholder status in the new month may be assigned to pairings departing before midnight.

You are encouraged to review JCBA Section 8.H.6. if you will be transitioning from Reserve to Lineholder or vice versa from month-to-month. If you have additional questions contact your Local Council office.

2016 – 2021 “New” Reserve Survival Guide Available to Download
MEC Reserve Committee

The MEC Reserve Survival Guide is available for your use as a reference while serving Reserve. This guide is based on the scheduling provisions contained within the 2016 – 2021 Flight Attendant Agreement and is now available on the MEC website.

Happy 74th Birthday, AFA!

We celebrated our union's birthday on August 22nd! Flight Attendants around the world - this is where it all began. We are one of the most organized professions in labor and together we have achieved amazing victories for equality, workplace health and safety and contracts that define our work as aviation's first responders. Cheers to Flight Attendants and Cabin Crew everywhere!

U.S.-based Cathay Pacific Flight Attendants Ratify First Contract

AFA Cathay Pacific Flight Attendants voted by 99 percent to ratify a first contract this week. The three-year agreement provides immediate pay increases, back-pay, schedule flexibility, and retirement security for Flight Attendants U.S. based in SFO, LAX and JFK.

“We are so excited that on our Union's 74th birthday hundreds of Flight Attendants are gaining the rights and benefits of a union contract for the first time,” said Sara Nelson, AFA International President. “Cathay Pacific Flight Attendants based in the U.S. voted by 97% to join AFA and used that overwhelming solidarity to win the improvements that drove their organizing campaign. These Flight Attendants inspire all of us with their commitment to each other, to our union, and to our work as aviation's first responders. We congratulate the Cathay Pacific Flight Attendants' leaders, activists and members.” Read more >

Air Wisconsin, Compass, GoJet Picket Nationwide 

Flight Attendants from Air Wisconsin, Compass, and GoJet were out on the picket line Wednesday at DCA, ORD, and LAX to push negotiations forward. They were joined by Flight Attendants from PSA, United, Mesa, and labor allies including CWA, NABET-CWA, SMART, Chicago Jobs with Justice, UNITE HERE!, Chicago Federation of Labor, and more. 

Management has proposed no more than 2% wage increases at all three of these airlines and many Flight Attendants are living in poverty. When the airline industry already has a scam business plan to profit off the backs of aviation’s first responders working regional flights for United, American, Delta and Alaska, these wage proposals are offensive and morally bankrupt. When one Flight Attendant is undervalued, we are all in jeopardy.

We stand together and stand up for Flight Attendants at Air Wisconsin, Compass, and GoJet fighting for a fair agreement - and to push the standards higher for Flight Attendants at all regional airlines. Stronger Together, Better Together!

Reminders and Quick Links

August 29           ISAP Program becomes Effective
August 19 - 25    National Aviation Week

September 2       U.S. Labor Day
September 11     9/11 Memorial Ceremonies Nationwide

October 6            CBT Completion Required           

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