During the first week in May 2013, the Association held a Joint Advisory Council (JAC) meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada where we reviewed a wide range of issues that all of our members and locals are currently dealing with. We collectively worked through many items, and the local presidents and carrier representatives in attendance will have an abundance of information to share with you at your local’s next membership meeting.
As you may recall on April 3, 2013, SWA formally announced their plans to close the line stations of Philadelphia and Sacramento by the end of 2013. On May 21 - 22, additional meetings were conducted in Dallas in an attempt to resolve this dispute as well as to work through an agreeable settlement to the fourth-line of maintenance arbitration decision that ruled the Company failed to comply with their obligations under our contract. Unfortunately, it does not appear that the Company is willing to work with us to resolve the issues and the arbitration dates in mid-June are fast approaching. The SWA Airline Representatives recently distributed a detailed report that provides an update on the array of issues that are currently being worked.
On May 22, 2013, Safety and Standards Director David Brooks and I attended a Professional Standards Program Training Class in Seattle, WA provided by Alaska Airlines. Local 14 ASA Professional Standards Chairman Kevin Kruse coordinated the training session for the Local 14 attendees, and David Brooks coordinated the attendees from the other AMFA locals. Local 32 sent a contingent of their Professional Standards Representatives from several stations. It was great to spend the day working and training with those who have the interests of our members protected.
On May 28, 2013, the IBT filed for a representation election at American Airlines with the National Mediation Board (NMB), and just a few hours later American Airlines was somehow able to deliver their eligibility list to the NMB. This unprecedented expediency by the Company effectively blocks AMFA from filing as an intervenor and getting on the ballot. Although we filed our petition via fax as soon as possible, the NMB has informed AMFA Legal that our filing has been rejected because the original filing documents and cards did not arrive before 4PM on May 28. It is greatly disappointing that the thousands of mechanic and related employees at American Airlines that signed AMFA cards are now being denied their opportunity to get AMFA on the ballot; however, we are exploring all of our options which include a write-in campaign if the NMB determines that the IBT has submitted enough cards to force an election. If the NMB determines that the IBT failed to demonstrate the “sufficient showing of interest” and filed short of the requirement, the IBT has also prevented the AMFA organizers from reaching their goal of an AMFA representation election.
For more carrier specific updates and further information regarding AMFA and the airline industry, please visit the AMFA National Web site at www.AMFANational.org and remember our most determined efforts will only succeed with your continued support and participation – Please stay informed. Remember, “Safety in the air begins with quality maintenance on the ground.”