Archive for June 2018

Status of Class Action Grievance and Arbitration

On Tuesday of this past week, the Union and Company arbitrated before the System Board of Adjustment the Class Action Grievance that was filed over the Company’s attempt to strip away cabin-safety duties from Flight Attendants on certain long-distance flights with augmented pilot crews.  The neutral Chairperson of the System Board was Arbitrator, David Twomey, and the Union Members of the System Board were NJA Flight Attendant, Andrew Collis, and Teamsters Local 284 President, Mark Vandak.  Also in attendance at the hearing were FAEC Members, Darcey Kniseley and Jill Mawdsley.

     The dispute arose earlier this year when the Company sent an email to Flight Attendants stating that it intended to strip away cabin-safety duties from Flight Attendants on certain flights in response to an FAA memorandum that addressed the applicability of 14 CFR §135.273, duty period limitations and rest time requirements, to voluntarily-assigned flight attendants. In the memorandum, the FAA ruled that:

 if an operator voluntarily assigns individuals to a crew on a part 135 operation and assigns cabin-safety-related responsibilities to those individuals during flight time, then those individuals are “flight attendants” for purposes of §135.273.  Because the duty and rest provisions of §135.273 apply to individuals who meet the “flight attendant” definition of §135.273(a), the FAA concluded that flight attendants who are assigned to a flight, in addition to the minimum crew complement, are subject to the flight, duty, and rest rules of §135.273.
     A decision in the case is expected in the next 60-90 days, and we will keep the membership informed of any additional developments.

ASAP Program Launch

After several years of hard work on the part of our Safety Committee, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT) has helped develop and establish a Safety partnership with both NetJets and the FAA that has created the addition of the flight attendant group to the Aviation Safety Action Program (ASAP).  The goal of ASAP is to enhance aviation safety through the voluntary reporting of safety issues and events that come to the attention of crew members.  Flight Attendants observe work place hazards from their unique perspective as front-line employees.  ASAP gives you the ability to be the eyes and ears of the membership, the company, and the FAA to help identify and proactively address potential safety risks.  Your reports can help identify potential safety risks that might otherwise go undetected.  This is essential to a goal we all share — the prevention of accidents and incidents and creating the safest possible operating environment for our flight attendants.  ASAP is a confidential safety reporting system that ensures the information provided is not used for any purpose other than enhancing safety, with several limited exceptions regarding illegal activity.  It is a no discipline reporting incentive for operational events reported with an ASAP report that meets acceptance requirements.  We are really excited to introduce this program to you and hope that it will be a useful resource to help improve your work conditions and environment.  If you have any safety concerns on the aircraft (systems, operations, procedures, CRM, etc.), please complete an ASAP report.  If you’re unsure if your concern qualifies for ASAP, we ask that you submit the form anyway.  These reports are retroactive; if you can’t recall all of the requested information, that’s okay.  Just provide the information you can remember.  To submit an ASAP report, sign into Jetstream.  You will see “SAFETY REPORTING” (on the left side of the homepage); click on it.  Once you’re on that page, click on “ASAP WBAT” and login to your account (see info in FAB 18-03, in Comply 365).  At this time, the ASAP form is lengthy and can be somewhat overwhelming (we’re working to shorten it).  In the meantime, you will see approximately four (4) fields that are RED.  These are the only fields we ask for you to complete.  As much detail as you can provide in the narrative section is helpful.  The more information we have to work with, the quicker we’ll be able to start the review process and make the necessary recommendations leading to changes.

For more information and guidance on the ASAP program, please contact your Safety Committee at FASC@netjetsflightattendants.com or Wendi Walters at (760) 419-9553 or any of your FAEC members.  Please refer to the ASAP MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) and the Flight Attendant Bulletin (FAB 18-03) in Comply365 regarding how to login to the ASAP reporting page.  The FAA information and documents can be located at https://www.faa.gov/about/initiatives/asap/.
This information is also currently being presented in the 2018 annual recurrent training program by Tina Lovejoy and the NetJets safety department.

In Solidarity,

Your FAEC
Darcey, Sean, Jill, and Chris

Sub-Committee Drive

Dear Membership,
As many of you know, there are opportunities to represent and advocate for your fellow flight attendants on several volunteer committees under the direction and guidance of your FAEC. Our structure differs from the pilots in that we are all volunteers fighting to protect the integrity of our contract with the company in our workplace. Over the years since we became unionized, we have had many of you serve and represent our work group as FAEC (Flight Attendant Executive Committee) representatives and Union Negotiations committee representatives. Both of these committees consist of four (4) Flight Attendant representatives that are chosen through a democratic voting process as outlined in our Local 284 Bylaws. Currently, your active FAEC consists of Darcey Kniseley (committee chair), Sean Dawson, Jill Mawdsley and our newly elected representative, Chris Strauch. On each Flight Line and on our union website (www.netjetflightattendants.com), we have our contact information and our group email (FAEC@netjetsflightattendants.com) for you to contact us so that we may resolve any contractual issues or give you guidance on contract interpretation. We are your representatives or what is known in the pilot world as stewards. We also serve the role of making executive decisions on your behalf regarding grievance settlements and NJA Flight Attendants System Board of Adjustment, as outlined in Section 22 of the CBA and in compliance with the Railway Labor Act which governs much of our union activity.

However, we rely on the membership to keep us abreast of contract violations and labor management cooperation. We are able to do this through the oversight and collaborative efforts of the committees outlined in Section 17 of the CBA and also in Section 23.15 and LOA 23-001, which explains the role of our Flight Attendant Professional Standards Committee. In addition to this committee, we have a CIRP (Critical Incident Response Program) representative and the ASAP ERC. The following information outlines the role of each Union Committee and introduces its representative(s) and their contact information and where there is a need for more representation, as well as the expectations of those roles.

Per CBA Section 17, we have three Union Committees. Each of these committees meet up to once per quarter for one day (except in the quarter where the full Committee meets). The company will meet with the full Union Committee once per year for one day. The company shall release from conflicting duty assignments Committee Representatives in order to meet with the company’s representative(s). Section 17.6 explains the logistics of this commitment (meeting dates, expenses, pay, and identification of members). Please review this information to decide if you would like to participate in voicing flight attendant concerns in each of the committee focuses. For each of these committees we need one representative of each fleet (Standard Range and Long Range); however, multiple people may participate. The chair will organize regular conference calls or email communications with the respective committee and an FAEC representative, when able, to communicate the interests of the membership and update the entire committee and FAEC on current, pertinent, and time-sensitive information regarding the meetings and communication with the company.

Union Safety Committee (Section 17.3)

Committee Representatives: Wendi Walters (chairperson) and Jill Mawdsley

  • We are currently seeking a Standard Range representative for this committee.

The Union Safety Committee works with the company to resolve safety-related concerns and the ASAP program through the lens of the CBA and the flight attendants’ perspective.

One of the projects that the Safety Committee has recently accomplished after more than three years of diligent work is a MOU (memorandum of understanding) regarding our ASAP program.

Wendi Walters (chairperson)
wendimwalters@gmail.com
(760) 419-9553

Union Travel Committee

Committee Representatives: Natalie McFadden (chairperson) and Britt Cox

  • Please contact us if you would like to participate on this committee. All CBA required positions are presently being served.

The Union Travel Committee meets with the company to discuss changes and updates regarding hotels, travel, airlines, and crew food. They communicate to the membership many of the programs for reward points and other travel-related perks.

Natalie McFadden (chairperson)
nsmcfadden@gmail.com
(614) 329-5684

Union Training Committee

Committee Representatives: Lynn Kelley (chairperson)

  • We are seeking a Standard Range representative for this committee.

The Union Training Committee meets with the company to discuss changes and updates to training, curriculum, manuals, standards, and CBA Section 6 compliance. The training committee will work with the company to communicate to the membership this information.

Lynn Kelley (chairperson)
Lynnkelley1965@gmail.com
(239) 289-0104

In addition to these committees, CBA Section 17.7 mentions other committees. The following are some of these committees:

Union Scheduling Committee

Committee Representatives: Mike Withorn (chairperson)

  • We are currently seeking other representatives from either fleet.

The Union Scheduling Committee reviews the Flight Attendant Duty Status Reports (Section 23.23), distribution of international flying, scheduling methods and systems, and Section 28 concerns such as duty limitations, duty rests, and duty period issues and concerns.

Mike Withorn (chairperson)
MWithorn@yahoo.com
(330) 327-7630

Union Uniform Committee

Committee Representatives: Shannon Saxe (chairperson), Chris Strauch, Andrew Collis, Joanne Savage, Barb Heinedrich, Michelle Morrison, and Bill Brackney

  • Please let us know if you have an interest in the uniform committee.

The Union Uniform Committee communicates with the Company about our new uniform and participates in periodic meetings. Since the restart of the uniform process, the committee has had more of a participatory voice in the style and design of the new uniforms.

Shannon Saxe (chairperson)
Ssaxe443@gmail.com
(269) 290-2575

Union 401K Committee

Committee Representatives:  Jerri Nickell (new volunteer)

  • We are currently seeking representatives from either fleet.
The Union Retirement Committee evaluates and suggests improvements to the 401(k) fund options, etc.  This is a newly formed committee as recognized per CBA Section 29.2, and we are looking for your proactive suggestions and involvement.
Jerri Nickell

(513) 218-6867

Union Professional Standards Committee

Committee Representatives: Jill Frantal (retiring) and Bethany Zell (Long Range)

  • We are currently seeking one representative for this committee.

The Professional Standards Committee (PSC) provides an avenue for NetJets Flight Attendants and Pilots to promote a professional work environment as well as to facilitate peer intervention based upon mutual respect, cooperation, and trust. The committee is recognized for these efforts by the company, and as such, may accept cases from management in an attempt to resolve issues, thereby avoiding management involvement.  The committee can assist in situations dealing with CRM-style issues, personality conflicts as well as non-compliance with SOP’s. This committee does not however, handle cases involving FAA enforcement actions, grievance matters, and substance abuse issues while on duty.

The PSC functions on a strict policy of confidentiality and a need-to-know basis. A case will not be discussed with others, including committee members unless the caller is advised that additional committee members will be informed and that their assistance would be helpful in resolving the case. By the same token, the professional standards process relies upon each participant to keep their conversations and the facts of each case confidential, which allows the resolution process to proceed in accordance with an established protocol.

Bethany Zell
oozelda@msn.com
(404) 323-8021

CIRP (Critical Incident Response Program)

Committee Representative: Vicky Lorton (chairperson)

  • We are currently seeing one representative for this committee.

The purpose for NetJets critical incident response program (CIRP) is to mitigate the psychological impact of an incident or accident and aid in the normal recovery from these events before harmful stress reactions affect job performance, careers, family and health. This is accomplished through peer-to-peer confidential debriefing, as well as but not limited to facilitating additional mental health referrals.

Vicky Lorton (chairperson)
vlorton@gmail.com
(832) 493-1159

Union Communications Committee

Committee Representative: JoDelle Burwell (retiring chairperson)

  • We are currently seeking two representatives for this committee.

The Union Communications Committee handles all communications between the FAEC and membership. This includes disseminating the Flight Line newsletter through Constant Contact, the online email marketing program. Additional responsibilities include maintaining the flight attendant website (netjetsflightattendants.com), union message board, and union membership databases throughout all platforms. Knowledge of online marketing platforms and website maintenance is helpful, and a strong copywriting and/or journalism background is mandatory.

JoDelle Burwell
JoDelleBurwell@outlook.com
(816) 665-6023

If you have an interest in volunteering for any of the committees, please feel free to contact the chairperson with your questions.  Or you may contact the FAEC at FAEC@netjetsflightattendants.com with your questions.

In Solidarity,

Your FAEC
Darcey, Sean, Jill, and Chris