We’ve put the Q&A from the Association of Professional Flight Attendants here. Keep reading if you want to see what allegedly is in the term sheets for American’s flight attendants.

Why now?

To say that American Airlines is facing a challenging time is an understatement. Despite the sacrifices we have made over the years, management’s business plan and strategy for emerging from bankruptcy is not a workable solution for the survivability of our company or our careers. American Airlines’ plan includes gutting our contract, and leaves us no option other than to evaluate alternatives. After extensive discussions and study, we strongly believe that US Airways’ management team can help restore and grow American Airlines and sustain a future for our membership.

After much consultation with our attorneys, financial advisors and analysts, it is clear that a merger with another carrier is inevitable; the question is not if, but when, and with which carrier.

We strongly believe US Airways has presented us with an opportunity that is in the best interest of our flight attendants both individually and collectively.

What is the short-term benefit?

Throughout the bankruptcy process, American Airlines has focused almost exclusively on its “cost” and “labor” problems. In an attempt to restructure and save the jobs of the dysfunctional management team, American Airlines has submitted a proposal to the bankruptcy court that would decimate our pay, weaken our work rules, cut our benefits, and cost thousands of flight attendants their jobs.

As APFA and other industry professionals have been saying for years, American’s problem is not with its costs, but with its revenues. And US Airways agrees. We’ve reached an interim agreement, referred to as a ‘bridge term sheet,’ with US Airways that would preserve – to a far greater extent – our jobs, pay, work rules and benefits than would American’s draconian, destructive plan.

What are the long-term benefits?

The most recent industry mergers of Delta/Northwest and United/Continental have created two large airline competitors. They have strengthened their alliances and have taken market share away from American, leading to decreased revenue. This is the greatest factor contributing to the demise of the American Airlines we once knew.

The transaction with US Airways will make American among the nation’s largest carriers. US Airways’ plan strengthens our market position and creates critical opportunities for growth now rather than years down the road. Our airline’s future is far brighter with this transaction and the US Airways team.

Critical to us, under the bridge term sheet for flight attendants, US Airways has agreed that if it buys American, there will be an expedited negotiations process that will result in a joint contract that, as a whole, is market-based.

When would our bridge term sheet take effect?

After American emerges from bankruptcy and US Airways takes control of American.

Why couldn’t we just wait for American to buy US Airways after it gets out of Bankruptcy?

First, bankruptcy will be a lengthy process that takes many, many months. In the interim, if the bankruptcy court approves the Company’s proposal, we would suffer for many years with excessive and unnecessary job cuts, pay and benefit reductions, and diminished work rules. Second, American may not be in a position to make a transaction happen once it emerges from bankruptcy. Third, our competitors are not going to stand still and wait for American to play “catch-up.” And finally, an American acquisition of US Airways would leave the current management team in place – a management team that no longer deserves our confidence.

I heard Delta was interested; wouldn’t they be a better choice than US Airways?

Delta has never reached out to APFA to discuss a potential purchase. Also, APFA and our professionals believe that the U.S. government would likely have significant antitrust issues with a Delta-American transaction. To address those concerns, Delta would have to break up the company; take over certain assets and/or hubs while United and other airlines could pick from what was left over. There is no certainty for flight attendants in this plan. Clearly, this is not a path that would be in our best interest.

Will the name of the merged carrier be American or US Airways.

American

Where will Corporate Headquarters be located?

US Airways plans on keeping the headquarters for the merged carrier in Dallas-Fort Worth.

What are the US Airways base cities?

Philadelphia, Washington DC, Phoenix, Charlotte.

How will seniority integration be handled if US Airways buys American?

Under Federal law (McCaskill-Bond Amendment) APFA and AFA will try to reach agreement on seniority integration. If an agreement cannot be reached, under McCaskill-Bond the matter must be submitted to binding arbitration.

What happens if US Airways’ offer to buy American Airlines is not approved?

We would continue to work through the bankruptcy process.

Early Out APFA’s proposal accepted
No Furloughs
Wage Increases: 2.5% on effective date. 1.5% annually over next 5 years.
Retirement: Pension plan frozen. Replaced with a 401(k) contribution.
Current employees will receive automatic 401(k) contributions for 5 years, with no match requirement. Contribution levels as follows:
9.9% age 50 +
6.75% age 40 – 50
5.5% age 39 – below
At the conclusion of the 5 year period, all FAs would receive a 3% contribution with up to a 5.5% match.
Active Health Benefits: Better than AA’s proposed plan
Retiree Health Benefits: Implementation of Voluntary Employee Beneficiary Association (VEBA).
Bidding: Preferential Bidding System (PBS) with our input
Reserve:
Incorporate earlier Reserve assignment notification
Add AM/PM Ready Reserve shifts.
Allow Reserve pick-up on days off to be paid on top of guarantee.
Current reserve rotation will be maintained.
Sequence Pay Protection: APFA proposal
Schedule Maximum:
Minimum of seventy (70) credit hours and a maximum of ninety (90) credit hours per bid period.
Flex in the maximum line value by an annual amount of twenty (20) hours, but in no case more than five (5) hours during any given month.
Incentive Pay/Per Diem: Incentive pay eliminated. Per diem rates increased to:
Domestic: $2.00
International: $2.20
International Override:
$3.00 per hour for each international leg. Override for deadhead, trip and duty rigs and trips “not flown” consistent with CBA
Combined Domestic & International Operation
Current Duty Rigs Preserved
Expedited Negotiations for New Contract: Negotiations for a market based contract will take place immediately following a single-carrier certification. If an agreement cannot be reached within 60 days of the certification the matter will be submitted to final binding arbitration.
Maintain all other provisions in our current Contract including:
Vacation accrual and pay
Current PVDs
Sick hour use and current sick policy
Current Hotel language
ATC/ Code 59
Galley pay

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