US Airways Flight Attendants, represented by the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA), today voted to ratify an Agreement on Bargaining and Representation between AFA and the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA) along with a Negotiations Protocol Agreement with American Airlines management. The agreement establishes a joint negotiations protocol for a single contract at the New American Airlines with the assurance of improvements in one year for all 24,000 Flight Attendants.
“US Airways Flight Attendants are eager to take full advantage of the benefits of the US Airways/American merger. We are making history by partnering AFA and APFA to use the combined strength and resources of our two unions to negotiate the best contract at the world’s biggest airline. US Airways Flight Attendants bring 65 years of bargaining experience with AFA to this merger and we proudly stand in solidarity with our new flying partners at American to honor histories and launch our promising future as American Flight Attendants working together – 24,000 strong,” said Roger Holmin, AFA US Airways President.
Beginning next week, AFA and APFA will form a joint negotiating team with an equal number of representatives and professional advisors as they spend the next 60 days preparing an opening proposal based on the best of both contracts and input from all Flight Attendants at the New American. Management has agreed to meet for 150 days with an intensive schedule that averages three weeks a month in an effort to reach an agreement on a combined contract. The parties will utilize the mediation services of the National Mediation Board and other expedited bargaining methods. If an agreement cannot be reached, only the open items will be submitted to arbitration based on an economic standard that will produce improvements over the current contracts. The entire process includes timelines that lead to implementation of a new single contract no later than the first quarter of 2015.
“We will work diligently over the next year to ensure our contract reflects our valuable contributions to the success of American Airlines. Unity pays.” added Holmin.
The agreement transitions representation for the combined group to the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA). The unions will jointly file a single carrier petition with the National Mediation Board in June, which will lead to certification of APFA as the representative in summer or fall. AFA will continue to work in partnership with APFA until the joint bargaining process is concluded and the new contract is implemented. Even after APFA’s certification, AFA will continue to enforce the current US Airways contract and related grievances.
“Our agreement with APFA ensures a smooth and effective transition for US Airways Flight Attendants as equal partners in the merger with a strong voice in shaping our future at the New American Airlines,” stated Holmin.