Council 25 Newsletter Logo

May 11, 2016

Inside this issue:Purser Preference Month Resumes
Assignment of Open Purser Positions
AFA Now Excluded from ISAP
JNC Update May 2-6, 2016
It’s Our Turn! Mark Your Calendars: Day of Action - May 19

Purser Preference Month Bidding Resumes

 Preference month bidding for the annual purser recurrent training (PRT16) resumed as of May 4th at 0700 Central Time and will close on June 9th at 0700 Central Time.  Bidding opened in April and was temporarily suspended due to logistics.  If you’ve previously bid for this year’s training class and do not have a change in your preference month bid, it is not necessary to resubmit the bid.

There is a bit more specific information available about where these classes will be conducted as well as to which location each domicile will be assigned for this training.  For pre-merger United purser qualified Flight Attendants, the following are the scheduled training locations:

Training Location
 Domiciles BOS & EWR
Given this additional information, please review any bids you may have submitted.  If you wish to make changes, simply re-submit bids via DIS*31013.  The last bid on file will be your final bid.

Preference month awards are expected to be posted by June 14th in field 3.A. in the FAINFO screen available via Unimatic.

Assignment of Open Purser Positions

As we all know, it’s been a while since we’ve had the good fortune of having new hires among our ranks.  With the addition of our newest Members to the line, we’ve started to receive some questions about the filling of open premium positions.  These questions suggest that we might all benefit from a review of the requirements of our Contract. 

Section 9.F.7. provides the mechanism by which we cover open premium positions when the Flight Attendant originally assigned to the line of flying is unavailable for an ID.  Over the past several years since we’ve not had Flight Attendants with less than one (1) year of seniority amongst our ranks, we’ve become accustomed to having the position filled by the most junior Reserve on the flight.  With the addition of the newest Members, this is not always the case. 

As a reminder, Section 9.F.7.b. restricts the assignment of any open premium position to a Flight Attendant with less than one (1) year of seniority and does not allow our most junior Members to assume a premium pay position unless no other more senior Flight Attendant in on the flight.  Premium pay positions include all purser positions – wide body, narrow body, domestic and international as well as paid galley positions.  There exception to this rule applies when there is no Flight Attendant assigned to the flight with more than one year of seniority.  In this case, our Contract provides that the most senior Flight Attendant among those on the flight will fill the open premium position. 

Section 9.F.7. of our Contract provides the guidelines for filling an open premium position at briefing regardless of the location where briefing is conducted.  A purser qualification (qualified purser) is necessary for all widebody aircraft flown domestically or internationally and all purser positions on narrow body aircraft flying international flights and should be filled by a qualified purser, if available.  However, if no qualified purser is available on these flights, the open premium position(s) on these aircraft will be filled by a Flight Attendant who is not purser qualified. 

In general, open premium positions are filled in the following manner:

  • First, by the most senior (Purser qualified) Flight Attendant who elects to fill the position; 
  • If none, then by the most junior (Purser qualified) Reserve
  • In none, then by the Flight Attendant who picked up the position through the Open Flying process
  • If none, by the most junior (Purser qualified) Flight Attendant on board
  • If none, then by the most junior Reserve (with a minimum of one year of service)*

*NOTE: In a circumstance where there are two Lineholders and a Reserve who is senior to both lineholders, the senior Reserve will be involuntarily assigned to the open position.

Once the position is filled at briefing, it remains filled until the end of the ID or until the person filling the position leaves the crew.  This is the case even in a circumstance where the person filling the open premium position has not yet completed one year of service. This means that a Flight Attendant who might be more senior (or purser qualified) joins a crew mid-sequence, may not take the position from a non-qualified or more junior Flight Attendant who has assumed the purser duties at briefing.

Please contact your AFA Local Council if you have additional questions.

Alert: AFA Now Excluded from ISAP

As we advised you earlier this week via our May 3, 2016 AFA E-lines, the Association has recently been made aware that a number of Inflight Safety Action Program (ISAP) reports filed during the month of April have not been provided to pre-merger United AFA ERC representatives.  

We received new information from United management that is disconcerting and has immediate implications for those Flight Attendants who elect to use the company provided voluntary reporting system, still being referred to as ISAP. Management has advised us today that reports submitted through the established ISAP channels will be reviewed “under the ERC framework”, a framework that now excludes your Union representation.

Because the Association has not been provided clear information on what this new review structure consists of nor are we clear who will be reviewing these reports, it is not possible for us to guarantee how reports will be dispositioned. 

While the Association continues to work a path forward with the FAA for Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) renewal, we strongly encourage all Flight Attendants to submit safety concerns or events via NASA’s Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS) at the following link: which is also available from the homepage of our website. 

AFA remains dedicated to a robust safety reporting program and safety culture. Our commitment has never wavered.  We do not take this action lightly but rather, we act out of a dedicated commitment to our Membership to ensure you have all the information about how the company has unilaterally changed the program we have publicly supported since its inception as the first Part 121 Cabin Aviation Safety Action Program.

Additional information on ASRS can be found by using the following link.  As your representative, know that we continue to work on your behalf and in your best interest. To this end, please provide us with copies of any reports that you submitted to ASRS by dropping those in your Local Council mailbox in the domicile.

JNC Update: May 2-6, 2016

The JNC has completed another week of negotiations in Chicago. With the two comprehensive proposals AFA and the Company passed to each other over the previous two weeks as a backdrop, our discussions this week focused on the outstanding issues that divide us. Mike Bonds, Executive VP of Human Resources and Labor Relations, joined the Company team at the bargaining table on Tuesday May 3.


This week’s talks centered around the remaining unresolved operational issues, and a great deal of time was spent on the continuing discussions, that began last week, regarding the Company’s economic evaluation of our proposal. AFA disagrees with the methodology, and underlying assumptions, United is using to value our proposals. With the help of our financial analyst Dan Akins, we have been challenging their calculations. The JNC clearly understands that debating economic analysis can quickly become a modern day version of, “How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?”, and we do not want to fall down that rabbit hole. However, the debate has helped the parties better assess the value of Flight Attendant work.

The discussion resulted in the JNC making another comprehensive proposal to the Company on Wednesday that refined our previous proposal from two weeks before and more directly addressed issues they view as being important. The JNC made this second comprehensive proposal in hopes that our actions would be met in kind by the Company.

On Thursday afternoon CEO Oscar Munoz met with the JNC to discuss the state of negotiations. While our time with Mr. Munoz was short, it was beneficial. This was the first time he has heard directly from the JNC, and our conversation with each other was not filtered by other representatives or departments.

Friday morning, the Company gave us another comprehensive proposal. Like the one AFA made earlier in the week, the Company’s was a refinement of their first proposal. While we are still apart on a number of key issues, this proposal more directly addressed Flight Attendant interests. We will review the Company’s proposal as we prepare for our next session.

The JNC would like to thank all the Flight Attendants who have taken the time to communicate with us and with the Company. Your voices are important and they are being heard.

Negotiations will resume on May 16 in Reston, Virginia.

It’s Our Turn! Mark Your Calendars: Day of Action - May 19

United Airlines is doing well.  These are not concessionary negotiations.  These negotiations are about putting three work groups together to complete United’s merger and move our airline forward.  It's been three years, and it's been long enough.   

It does not matter whether we come from pre-merger CAL, CMI or UAL.  It does not matter if we are based in Newark, Chicago, Hong Kong, Guam or anywhere else; we must all stand together to let management know we must all be recognized for our contributions to United Airlines' success. 

Mark your calendars for our next Day of Action on Thursday, May 19, 2016. Details are posted as they become available onOurContract.orgIt's Our Turn!

Here is the information for Las Vegas Day of Action:

Las Vegas LAS Terminal 3 Level 2 9:30 - 10:30 a.m. Flight Attendants, Pilots, and Employees wear uniforms and AFA Pin.








Your Account
This official AFA Newsletter was sent to your email address of [[Email]]. If you wish to change this email address, please visit your Account Management page.

Unsubscribe Procedure
You may easily unsubscribe from this newsletter using this 1-click unsubscribe link: Click here to automatically remove your email address.

Subscribe to the Council 25 Newsletter
You may subscribe to this newsletter by visiting this page.  Remember to tell your flying partners about our newsletter!