- Monthly activities are planned to maintain pressure on management during the Red Hot Summer campaign.
- It is crucial to follow the “status quo” and participate only in officially endorsed actions during negotiations.
- Flight Attendants should avoid illegal activities like encouraging work disruptions or unprotected concerted actions, as they can lead to termination of employment and personal financial liability.
Our Negotiating Committee knows everyone is fired up to participate in the Red Hot Summer campaign. We’re planning monthly activities to keep pressure on management, and we’re thrilled at the level of support and enthusiasm from Flight Attendants. Thank you in advance for wearing the red AFA pin to show our solidarity to management. We are all AFA!
Maintaining “Status Quo”
Now that negotiations are really heating up, we want to make sure everything the group does is legal under the Railway Labor Act (RLA). Since we are still in direct negotiations, we can’t engage in a strike, work slowdown or other activity designed to cause economic harm to the Company. Likewise, management can’t lock us out or impose new contract terms. Basically, in terms of how and when we do our work, nothing has changed. This is called the “status quo,” and both sides are required to maintain it.
What does this mean? It means don’t go rogue! Flight Attendants should not do anything on their own. You should participate only in actions officially endorsed by our Negotiating Committee and Master Executive Council (MEC). Right now, that is wearing the red AFA pin, telling management we deserve better, wearing red to the “Summer of Care” employee events, attending the pop-up informational picketing this week, and the August 15 Day of Solidarity. AFA leadership runs all our planned actions by the AFA International Legal Department to ensure everything is legal and effective.
Examples Of Unprotected Concerted Activity
Some of the more common actions we’ve seen discussed on social media is encouragement to stop picking up Open Time or to stop offering Visa applications onboard. This type of concerted activity is illegal and could subject you to financial liability and termination of employment. Moreover, AFA leadership has a duty to actively discourage and disavow such behavior to avoid financial liability for our Union.
Management has told us that they will be watching “trends” very closely. Of course, you are not required to pick up Open Time or to offer Visas; many flight attendants never do. However, if management sees a trend that less Open Time than usual is being picked up (or a similar trend with potential economic impact for the Company), then we can expect an investigation and, possibly, legal action.
The same goes for a “sick out.” If you are sick, absolutely call in sick. Management is also keeping a close eye on attendance trends. If you are calling in sick because you are mad at management or to pressure them to put more money on the table, then management may terminate your employment for sick leave abuse.
“Working To Rule”
We have also heard Flight Attendants talking about “working to rule.” Working to rule (or work to rule) means you do only what is clearly required by the contract and/or the Flight Attendant Manual or that you start strictly following time-consuming rules or procedures not normally observed. A coordinated effort to work to rule would likely be considered an illegal work slowdown or stoppage. Just do your job as you always have. Right now, management is on high alert, and we don’t want to see anyone get into trouble.
DIY Bag Tags, Lanyards, Etc.
There has been some buzz on social media about Flight Attendants wearing (or planning to wear), altered pins or tie tacks, or creating their own bag tags and lanyards. While we appreciate the creativity, we want to caution against such actions. Management may consider displaying non-approved items a violation of the uniform policy, which management treats as a performance issue.
Sanctioned Demonstrations Of Solidarity
Besides the fact that we don’t want anyone to get into trouble, our Negotiating Committee would like Flight Attendants to stick to the authorized “solidarity swag” because the rollout of these items and the associated actions are coordinated to build and sustain pressure on management in a cohesive manner. Individual, ad hoc actions distract from the unified message we must all be sending management. You help most when you participate in demonstrations of solidarity that are sanctioned by AFA leadership – like wearing the red AFA pin. We are stronger together, better together!
Share Your Ideas
We know how creative our group is. Please send your campaign actions and messaging ideas to your Local Mobilization Committee Chairperson (ANC, SEA, PDX, SFO, LAX, SAN), and they will pass those along to our Negotiating Committee. Thank you in advance for sharing!