Q: Does the Negotiating Committee want to limit the number of probationary Flight Attendants per flight?
Based on the results of the negotiations survey and direct feedback from Flight Attendants regarding training and probationary Flight Attendants, the Negotiating Committee included a limit on the number of probationary Flight Attendants working any particular flight in our opening proposal. This was not intended as a commentary on the competency of probationary Flight Attendants but rather an attempt at creating an environment in which Flight Attendants have the best possibility to pass probation and feel supported by their peers.
The parties worked on Section 7 Probation Period during the first week of negotiations and ended up TA’ing (i.e., tentatively agreeing to) that section, which was covered in the First Negotiation Session update. The Negotiating Committee will not often disclose specific details of a TA’d section because specific provisions within that section could conceivably be changed prior to finalizing a full tentative agreement. However, it is very doubtful that Section 7 Probation Period would be one of those sections.
After much discussion within the Negotiating Committee, we decided to not pursue the proposed restrictions for a variety of reasons: e.g., potential bidding seniority violations, logistical challenges for self-assignment, et cetera. With the planned addition of another week for Initial Training, we are hopeful Flight Attendant trainees are provided more opportunities to hone their skills and refine their craft prior to being released to the line.