AFA Council 21 News

INSIDE THIS ISSUE - November 6, 2016

• National Child ID Program
• Drug and Alcohol Testing Pay
• MEC 9-12 Profit Sharing Grievance
• Holiday Pay Formula
• Election Day, November 8 - Get Out and Vote!
• New Hire Corner: Reserve Christmas Wish List

Ladies and Gentlemen of Council 21,

As a reminder, It’s time to "Fall back" and adjust our clocks by one hour as Daylight Savings time came to end Today, November 6th. If you've forgottten to turn your clocks back one hour, Daylight Savings time officially ended at 2:00am, Local Standard Time (LST).

In the next few days, I will be putting out the "December Bidding Information". Knowing that there is much anticipation in what we will be flying in DCA, I am including a preview of what to expect.

DCA will have International flying consisting of 482 positions (includes language). PEK, NRT, MUC, BRU, FRA, MEX, CUN, SJU, SJD, AUA & PLS. 

DCA will have Domestic flying consisting of 403 positions. You will continue to see more widebody domestic flying, including 767 and 777 in some ID's.

DCA will have 30 Reserve Lines. This represents less Reserve lines with more positions, as opposed to more Reserve Lines with less positions.

We had been getting reports that the DCA Base Seniority list, as well as the DCA Purser Seniority list was not available in the Domicile. I have been in contact with Kay Panos, and am happy to report that there are current Seniority lists now available to you. If you cannot find it or there is any type of issue, please contact us.

As always, we have a Volunteer from the Reserve Committee and either an Officer or Volunteer available 24/7. Please call us @ 703 260 0051, and follow the prompts: After Hours - Press 1 for Reserve, 2 for immediate issues, 3 to leave a message (calls returned next business day).

We extend our Congratulations to our New Hire Flight Attendants in Council 21 who are finishing their probationary period through November. You all have done a great job!

 Thank you all for being informed and engaged Members. Please remember to fly safe, challenge rumor and to respect each other.

 In Solidarity and with Respect,

Todd Failla

Local Executive Council President

AFA-CWA DCA, Council 21


2017 Phase I Vacation Bidding - Closes  Tomorrow November 7th:

Phase I (Primary) Vacation bidding is currently open and will close on November 7, 2016 at 0830 local domicile time.  Phase I bid awards will be posted no later than November 12, 2016 at 0830 local domicile time. For more information on the 2017 Vacation Bidding process visit our website. 


National Child Identification Program Kits:

At last year's AFA Board of Director’s Meeting, the Board was introduced to the National Child Identification Program through the American Football Coaches Association and the AFA leadership was encouraged to join forces in supporting the initiative to protect our children.

At the direction of the United Master Executive Council, a decision was made to support the National Child Identification Program in their efforts to reverse the disturbing trend where 800,000 children go missing every year. A supply of the National Child Identification kits were purchased.

We present this gift of safety from our AFA family to the families of our Members, We are proud to be part of this significant effort to protect our children.


In Council 21, we will start distributing the kits this week in the IAD Rotunda. 


Drug and Alcohol Testing Pay:

As provided for in Section 4.F. of our Joint Contract, Flight Attendants are compensated in the amount of $25 for drug and alcohol testing. We’ve been receiving questions from pre-merger United Flight Attendants questioning the absence of a DFAP positing following such testing.  In researching the missing postings, we are learning that Drug and Alcohol Testing pay will not appear in the DFAP.  Instead, it will appear as a separate line item on the Pay Advice the timing for such payment typically occurs in the month following the testing.

Flight Attendants will need to keep track of such testing and, if not paid, will need to initiate a pay claim through payroll if the payment is not received. For additional information please contact your Local Council.

MEC 9-12 Profit Sharing Grievance:

 In June of 2012 MEC Grievance 9-12 was filed when Profit Sharing payments did not conform to section 5.J.2 of the agreement and these deviations were made without the consent of the Union. This grievance is pending with the System Board of Adjustment. We will notify you as additional information becomes available. 


Remember to Check Your DFAP for Holiday Pay:

To ensure that you have been properly credited for any Holiday Pay you are due, you are encouraged to verify your DFAP in Unimatic after you have either completed your ID or sat on Ready Reserve and was not used during one of our Contractually paid holidays. The Holiday Pay cert code is "061." If you feel there is an error and you should have received Holiday Pay and you did not, contact United payroll via the Flight Attendant Support Team (FAST).

Our Contract also provides that a Flight Attendant on Ready Reserve (RSV) status, who is not given an assignment on the holiday, will receive Holiday Pay for the value of the Reserve day (4:27 hours in a 30-day month, or 4:13 hours in a 31-day month).  

  1. If you are a Call-in Reserve (CLLR) and released on the holiday, you would not receive holiday pay.
  2. If you are on Ready Reserve (RSV) and do not fly, you will receive 4:27 hours (30 day month) or 4:13 (31 day month) times your Reserve hourly rate.
  3. If you are a converted CLLR or Ready RSV and fly an ID, you will receive either the Reserve daily “holiday rate” specified above or your Holiday Pay will be calculated as it is for a Lineholder for the ID(s) to which assigned, whichever is greater. 

A comprehensive article on Holiday Pay, as it is applied for both Lineholders and Reserves, is available on our website.


Election Day, November 8 - Get Out and Vote!:

Election Day is Tuesday, November 8th.  There’s a lot at stake this year.  If you have not already voted, we urge you to do so.  With all the various national and international issues coming into play, we need to remind ourselves that when we cast a vote for a President, we are voting for more than that individual. 

Our new President will have the power to appoint federal officials and judges who will directly impact our way of life and our profession.  We work in a highly regulated industry and Flight Attendants are directly impacted on a day-to-day basis by the decisions of various federal agencies that govern our profession and are staffed and run by presidential appointees. 

There are many Federal Agencies that have a direct impact on our workplace including: 

The FAA and DOT:  The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Department of Transportation (DOT) have the greatest impact on our workplace (the aircraft), our job responsibilities and many our duties.

The TSA and DHS:  The Transportation Security Agency (TSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) determine the level of security on the aircraft and our duties as aviation’s last line of defense. 

The HHS: The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) oversees the procedures and rules for Flight Attendant drug and alcohol testing. 

The NMB:  The National Mediation Board (NMB) monitors our contract negotiations and our employers.  It determines when, and if, we can go on strike (after the Membership has voted to strike), and supervises the efforts of non-union Flight Attendants to organize.

The Supreme Court:  The Court rules on cases that set federal laws including marriage equality, women’s reproductive choice and more.  Federal judges oversee airline bankruptcies and lawsuits over our right to strike and our right to represent members as a Union. 

The Department of State: The Department of State negotiates aviation treaties with foreign governments that determine where our employers can fly and if foreign companies can begin to own and operate our airlines.

The EPA:  The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates the drinking water onboard the aircraft.

We need to remember when we vote for a President, we are also voting for all these appointees who will influence our industry and profession. 

In addition to voting for President, next Tuesday we will also decide seats in the Senate and House of Representatives (as well as gubernatorial seats in several states). 

We need to vote for candidates that will not silence our voice and support our work as Aviation’s First Responders.  When you cast a vote for your candidate make sure they support Flight Attendant issues such as our Fight for Ten and a Fatigue Risk Management Plan, a no vote on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, action against the government subsidized Gulf carriers, and ensuring the DOT stops Norwegian Air International’s flag of convenience business model (no sweatshop airlines) that destroyed the U.S. shipping industry. Vote for candidates that will protect our industry and advance our profession.

Go out and vote!  Our vote. Our power. Our voice. 


New Hire Corner - Christmas Wish List (Section 10.C.13.c.):

Flight Attendants on Reserve for the month of December, have an opportunity to preference where they would like to layover for the three (3) days preceding and two (2) day following Christmas.  Section 10.C.13.c. of our Contract provides not only for the Reserve Christmas Wish List but also for these assignments to be made in seniority order. When submitting your requests, you will be asked for your Reserve LOF number as well as your Reserve status (CLLR/RSV).  Requests may be submitted for up to four layover locations.

You may submit your Christmas Wish List requests through the link, which will be available on at the beginning of December.  We encourage you to put an initial request on file early and modify your request if your circumstances change later in the month to take full advantage of the flexibility of our programming.  The last request on file will be the request that will be considered at the time of assignment.  The submission page will detail the dates of your request and must be finalized to be considered.

For a full list of deadline dates for the holiday period, as well as more detailed information please visit  United Crew Scheduling will make every attempt to accommodate the Reserve Christmas Wish List layover requests to the best of their ability.

Below are some frequently asked questions:

1.  I didn't know this process existed during the holidays for Reserves.  Is this something new?

No.  This process is Contractual and is referenced in Section 10.C.13.c in our Contract.

2.  How long is the period of time where I can have my request granted?

At Christmas, for three (3) days preceding and two (2) days following the holiday.  Reserve Flight Attendants may indicate their preference for layovers for these days through the automated means provided by the Company.

3.  How many layover request cities can I enter?

Reserve Flight Attendants can specify up to four (4) cities as layover locations.

4.  What if I put Dublin, Ireland or Canton, OH as my layover wishes?

Unfortunately, we can only accommodate wishes that layover in cities serviced by United's mainline operations that are operating during the Christmas season (in the case of seasonal service) and are operating using metal assigned to the pre-merger United operation.

5.  Can I change my request after it's been entered and can I do this more than once?

Yes!  As long as your final request has been input by the deadline dates listed on the main page where you input your request.

6.  I've added and changed my request a few times in the process, which one will be considered?

Your latest request/update submitted before the deadline is the wish that will be looked at.

7.  How is my seniority taken into consideration for my Christmas Wish List request?

When you add or edit your request your seniority number is attached to your file number and can be viewed by those processing the request.

8.  I'm going to be without computer access for a while.  Can I call the crew desk with my Christmas Wish List request rather than use this website?

No.  This website is the only way to input layover requests. Enter your requests on this page.

9.  I have a very old computer from, say, 2003.  Are there any minimum system or operating requirements needed to access and navigate this website easily and effectively?

See our technical requirements page.

10. Why do I need to enter my date of birth into the website?

Your date of birth serves as both a security verification and accuracy check for the Christmas Wish List request.

11. How do I know if my request has been recorded in the system?

Once your request has been submitted, you receive a notification with a confirmation number.  An example of the screen you see is shown below: 

12. I returned to the Reserve Christmas Wish List later on and changed my information. I then received a different confirmation number. Which one should I reference if I have a problem? 

Every time you either add a request or update your existing request on file, and save the changes, you will receive an updated Confirmation Number. Thus, you only need to keep for reference the most recent Confirmation number that you receive.

13. I've forgotten my Flying Together password?  Who should I contact?

For Flying Together password resets and other Flying Together technical questions, then please call (847) 700-5800.

14. I am unsure if my request has been accepted and I am experiencing some technical difficulties with the Christmas Wish List website, who should I contact?

Both AFA and UA representatives are regularly monitoring the following e-mail account.  Please send your concern and contact information using the following e-mail address: When contacting this email address, please include the following information: 

  • Your full name
  • Domicile
  • File number
  • A contact email/telephone
  • Description of the problem, type of computer and web browser you are using
  • Description of the error message and/or nature of the problem

NOTE:  Requests sent to that do not include all of the above information will not be processed.

15. I fly out of ORD and live in the area, can I preference ORD as a layover choice and hopefully be awarded a one-day trip so I can spend some of the holiday at home?

Unfortunately, Reserve Flight Attendants cannot preference their home domicile city as a layover choice.  Flight Attendants that put their domicile city as a layover choice will not have that city awarded as a "wish.”

16. I'm a PM Continental flight attendant and this sounds like a really great program!  Where can I put in choices for a layover as I'm on reserve this month?

This program is for AFA represented, PM United Flight Attendants.


AFA Council 21 office: 703-260-0051
Email Address:
AFA Master Executive Council Website:
The Council 21 Website:

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