Resolution of MEC 1-18 – Maternity Leave Dispute
January 1, 2019
The company and AFA have met to review and discuss the concerns of AFA that resulted in the filing of MEC Grievance 1-18. We are pleased to report that our discussions have resulted in a settlement of the Grievance that we believe is beneficial to the Flight Attendant membership.The following are the highlights of the settlement which will be captured and included in an upcoming edition of the company Maternity policy.
- Effective January 1, 2019, a Flight Attendant who is pregnant is no longer required to provide an initial pregnancy certificate to support her ability to continue to fly at the start of her pregnancy.
- A Flight Attendant who is pregnant may continue to work as a Flight Attendant as long as she is medically able to do so, subject to the following requirements:
o Not later than the start of the 28th, 30th and 32nd week of pregnancy, the Flight Attendant must provide certification from her physician that she is medically able to continue to fly;
o Not later than the start of the 33rd week of pregnancy and each week thereafter, the Flight Attendant must provide certification from her physician that she is medically able to continue to fly.
- At the Flight Attendant’s option, she may choose to start her Maternity Leave of Absence commencing any time beginning with the start of the 28th week of pregnancy but no later than the 31st day following the birth of the child, subject to the following:
o The Flight Attendants must advise the Flight Attendant Support Team (FAST) of the date on which she wishes to begin Maternity Leave,
o Commencement of Maternity Leave will not generate attendance points,
o Once Maternity Leave commences, it will continue until the Flight Attendant advises the company she wishes to return to work, or 12 consecutive months following the birth of the child, whichever comes first.
It is important to understand that the terms of Section15.F.1. of the JCBA will apply for any maternity or pregnancy related absences prior to the commencement of Maternity Leave, that is, treated as sick leave and will be assessed points for attendance/disciplinary purposes unless otherwise required by law. Maternity/pregnancy related absences will be assessed points, subject to point reduction or exemption as required by Agreement or law in the same manner as absences that are not maternity/pregnancy related.
A Flight Attendant who is unable to work due to her own medical condition may use Sick Leave by following the normal sick leave process. Sick leave may be used both prior to and following the birth of the child. However, sick leave may not be used while on Maternity Leave.
In a circumstance where a Flight Attendant wishes to continue to use Sick Leave beyond the 30th day following the birth, she may do so with the understanding that she is waiving her ability to take Maternity Leave pursuant to Section 15.F.1. of the JCBA.
Finally, those Flight Attendants who received attendance points for the last maternity/pregnancy related absence that transitioned into Maternity Leave between September 28, 2017 and December 31, 2018 will have those points removed from their record.
If you have additional questions or require clarification on any of these changes prior to the release of the revised Maternity related documents, please contact your Local Council Office.