|Paper Trail Starts HERE
|Tuesday, 17 August 2010
We've never made any bones about the fact that we think a direct relationship has worked well for Delta people. . ."
~ Joanne Smith
BREAKING NEWS UPDATE!!
» NMB DETERMINES DELTA IS SINGLE TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM
Ruling Sets Election Process in Motion
Just before today's eNews hit the press, the National Mediation Board (NMB) issued its determination that Delta Air Lines is a Single Transportation System (STS) for the purposes of a representational election, as requested in AFA-CWA's July 1 petition. This decision initiates the election process, starting with a 14-day window, during which AFA-CWA will submit our showing of interest to be placed on the representational ballot. Other parties seeking to represent DAL Flight Attendants must submit the necessary 35% showing of interest (signed NMB cards) by August 31, 2010, as well. The NMB has not yet determined the actual election timeline, which is expected to follow shortly thereafter. Read the NMB's Single Transportation System decision HERE.
» NMB AGREES: DELTA GUILTY OF IAM ELECTION INTERFERENCE
After a thorough investigation, the National Mediation Board (NMB) has unanimously concluded that Delta Air Lines illegally interfered with the February 2010 Flight Simulator Technician IAM representation election and has ordered the election to be rerun, August 25 through September 16. Their complete decision can be viewed HERE.
The NMB determined that laboratory conditions for a fair election were tainted when Delta promised pay raises for non-union workers on the first full day of voting. IAM charges that Delta management conducted illegal one-on-one meetings where employees were improperly coerced were also upheld in the decision. According to the Railway Labor Act, carriers may not influence, interfere with, or coerce the employees' selection of a collective bargaining representative.
The rerun election will be conducted using the old NMB election rules that were in place when IAM filed its original election request last summer. Under the old rules, any Flight Simulator Technician who does not participate in the election will default to an automatic "no" vote. Interested parties should keep an eye on IAM'S CAMPAIGN WEBSITE for the latest election news. READ MORE HERE >>
» THIS WEEK IN LABOR HISTORY
On August 20, 1866, the newly organized National Labor Union first called on Congress to mandate an eight-hour workday.
» CABIN FEVER VII: HOT IN HERRE!!!
In response to our CABIN FEVER AWARENESS CAMPAIGN, the company has added a DeltaNet APU Smart Use link that takes you to "APU Central." Check it out. While APU Central includes much in the way of APU usage statistics, goals, performance, and accountability, it does nothing to address the real issue: cooling our airplanes down NOW!!! We are glad Delta recognizes your HEATED COMPLAINTS. Their myopic online response, however, ignores the larger operational quagmire that somehow prevents lip service memos from translating into safely cooled, comfortable cabins. Why, for instance, are ground power units NOT routinely pumping preconditioned cold air, as prescribed to be the primary means of controlling aircraft temperatures at the gate? Stay tuned, as we continue to push for proactive procedures that get followed in real life - not just on paper!
After all, if passengers are uncomfortably hot, it's too late. If they complain, be sure they know how to submit their own Cabin Fever feedback concerns to Delta and the DOT. If it gets so hot that you or a colleague become ill, advise the Captain, contact the IFS Manager on Duty, and seek medical care. Fill out OJI paperwork, including the heat related illness diagnosis from your Doctor. And finally, if you have exhausted all other Delta procedures without remedy, you may call the OCC directly to request emergency assistance in securing cooler air at (800) 233-4638. Continue to report extreme temperatures with your AFA thermometer, instances of food poisoning from unchilled EATS or crew meals, and other heat-related safety concerns HERE. As always, follow proper company reporting protocols, so they cannot deny it's occurring. Remember, if you don't report it, it didn't happen.
» THE SCOOP - "Will the Real Third Party Please Stand Up?"
What's the Scoop? I like my manager, and the Direct Relationship thing is fine when I'm getting new uniform shirts or picking up a commendation letter. But when I used FMLA and needed to fix some insurance, COBRA and payroll problems, it "wasn't her table." She sent me to 800-MY-DELTA for answers, and THAT was just the beginning of a bureaucratic voicemail nightmare where I got trapped navigating an endless cycle of disjointed phone prompts to reach a live human. . . and I never got same answer twice. Turns out my "direct relationship" was with an operator named Gladys - in Phoenix.
Here's the Deal: Bulls eye! Thousands of PMNW Flight Attendants already enjoy a "Direct Relationship" with their managers, despite Joanne's claim it's not possible. (See more about that tall tale in the "UNSLANTED" blog, which straightens out executives when they misrepresent the truth.) What Joanne doesn't mention are relationship limiters. Your manager may do everything they can to assist you directly, but when the chips are down, sometimes it's "Hello, Employee Service Center." Dozens of benefits and service departments that NWA used to handle in-house with tenured employees are now outsourced to third party H.R. "solutions company" call centers. This, too, is a legacy of Delta culture.
You need FMLA? Your Direct Relationship is with a Sedgwick representative. Injured on the job? Your Direct Relationship is with the ACE/ESIS Claim Reporting Center. COBRA? We think they're somewhere in Pittsburgh. Questions about benefits, payroll, medical, dental, vision, employee self-service, pass travel, address changes, maternity, dependent eligibility, insurance, qualifying life event changes, pension, survivorship, retirement, your pay or Delta issued check, disability, workers' compensation, termination, severance, or the ever-popular "other"? Call the 800-MY-DELTA Employee Service Center in Phoenix to start your direct relationship today!
These perfectly nice non-Delta employees ask questions and interact with you from a pre-scripted template, since H.R. vendors have no first hand knowledge of your actual job and may never have even been on an airplane. Of course, we've all heard the resolution rate these script-reading outsourced answer folks offer. But if you're lucky, maybe Gladys will answer.
Delta's signature slant is on everything from menus to ads to "facts" about representation. Check out UNSLANTED, our rumor control column, where we balance distorted information and realign warped views. If something out there sounds skewed, it probably is! We're bent on setting the record straight. Ask us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
» CREW SCHEDULING REPORT
The NWA-AFA Central Scheduling Committee (CSC) will hold its biannual meeting with the company in October. Our contract provides the committee with the ability to give input and recommend changes in the distribution of future flying. Your input about recent and ongoing Reserve and Lineholder issues is important! Submit an automated Crew Scheduling Report Form HERE or contact the committee at email@example.com.
» INN SIGHTS
As safety and service professionals, Flight Attendants have a keen eye for what constitutes great service in other arenas. We recognize and appreciate excellent customer service ten miles out. We can be particularly compassionate with those in the hospitality industry, understanding hard days on one's feet. After a long day on our feet, however, sometimes our patience tank feels drained. It is human nature to become less tolerant of shortcomings when others are short staffed. As such, we've been asked to issue the following reminder on behalf of those who serve up our rooms and host our night's sleep.
Please be mindful of public image and professional behavior on layovers as much as in the aisle. Heavy summer flight schedules and record cancellations are taxing hotel workers, too. Front desk check-in lines have been unusually crowded, resulting in occasional delays in receiving room assignments. Staff at several of our preferred domestic hotels have asked for your continued courtesy and patience, as they work through scheduling anomalies and endeavor to provide the standard of preferred service we enjoy. READ MORE HERE >>
» EAP - "WALK A MILE IN THEIR SHOES"
Tough times affect everyone differently. Even defining what's tough is sometimes a tough call. Remember the old saw not to judge others until you've walked a mile in their shoes? (Or hand-run 24 meals in new heels…) We rarely know the whole story of another's life circumstances, passenger or peer. Their "off day" could be the result of Cabin Fever, full flights and poor catering. Or, it could be a symptom of something much larger: a bad home situation, health problems, abusive relationship, financial difficulties, a sick family member, depression, anxiety, alcohol or chemical dependency, to name a few. Your AFA Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is a confidential peer-to-peer assessment, support and referral service, and they are always just a phone call away. No one's job should be put at risk because they are having a bad day, trying to cope with a difficult season in life, didn't smile enough, or rubbed someone the wrong way. For a list of current EAP contacts, click HERE. For additional EAP information and resources, click HERE.
» IN THE NEWS
Skies Aren't So Friendly For Many Flight Attendants, NPR, August 14, 2010
He now also faces charges of criminal mischief and reckless endangerment - but many flight attendants say they know where he was coming from. . . READ MORE HERE >>
JetBlue Flight Attendant Speaks, ABC News Video (includes clip of Richard Anderson), August 11, 2010
"Out on bail, the flight attendant who went ballistic is a free man. .. Today Delta's CEO used Steven Slater as an example of how to treat flight attendants: "You ought to all take a lesson and just be respectful of what they do. . . WATCH VIDEO HERE >>
U.S. airline payrolls sink to 13-year low, USA TODAY, August 12, 2010
"Full flights? Get used to them. Stressed flight attendants and call centers in India? Get used to those, too." That's the somber assessment from The Associated Press, which goes on to add that "while the current state of the U.S. airline industry can be frustrating for passengers, it's bad for employees, too -- and some suggest it's getting worse. . .READ MORE HERE >>
BRING A COLLEAGUE. GET MOTIVATED. GET INVOLVED.
The NWA AFA MEC Calendar of Events is found on the front page of nwaafa.org. Delta Flight Attendants are often invited to local union meetings throughout the country as well, and there are also information sessions and gatherings planned and posted at Delta AFA.
DON'T FORGET TO WEAR YOUR UNION PIN - AT WORK & TO TRAINING!
Show your support for collective bargaining by wearing your union pin to work and all company events. Together, we are AFA. Click HERE or visit afanet.org for information about AFA-CWA union structure and the history of the AFA-CWA. Dues & Member Information can be viewed HERE.
EXTRA!! EXTRA!! READ ALL ABOUT IT-FIRST!!
Do you like to be the first to hear the scoop, or prefer it filtered through eight layers of rumor mill before it reaches your ears? Flight attendants are arguably the world's most quick-paced and mobile workforce. As information about our campaign for representation develops at an equally fast pace, you can keep up with breaking news by using our new Delta AFA text messaging service.
Get involved. Stay informed. Be the first to know with Delta AFA text messaging.
Sign up to receive Delta AFA text message alerts by clicking HERE or text "goafa" to 69866.
"When JetBlue flight attendant Steven Slater grabbed two beers and took an emergency exit slide earlier this week, he became an instant media sensation.