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Correcting an Inaccuracy & Setting the Record Straight

Date: January 11, 2019

On January 7, 2019, regrettably and as well intended as it may have been, there was a document released by a Local Council that has created a number of questions from around the system. There was incorrect information in the article that is being misinterpreted by our Members and that has the potential to put our Members at risk.  The article addressed the following two topics:

  • PTO, Vacations and Short Blocks
  • Reserve Assignment Window

We have been advised by Labor Relations that the information contained in this publication was the result of the processing/resolution of a local NOD. However, because NOD resolutions are processed on a no cite, non-precedent basis, the information published in this article does not properly have a system-wide application. The information should not have been presented as if the resolution had a system-wide application or that there was necessarily as system-wide dispute on the issues presented. 

This communication is intended to clarify the company and the Union’s mutual understanding as it pertains to the topics presented in the publication.

PTO Awards and Application of CNF – A Review

Section 7.AA.4. of our JCBA provides that CNF will be applied to a Reserve schedule in two ways:

If a PTO day will cause a Reserve to be unable to be assigned on her/his remaining days of availability, the Reserve will be placed on PTO for the day requested, and CNF for the subsequent days on in the reserve block if the next block of days off are Set days.

This provision of the Agreement is applied differently at International & North American & Guam Locations

International Locations (LHR, FRA, NRT & HKG)

A day of PTO day will most often cause a Reserve to be unable to be assigned on her/his remaining days of availability at International locations where the shortest trip in the monthly bid package is typically three (3) days. In a circumstance where the Reserve were to take PTO on the third day of a five day block that is followed by Set days off, the Reserve would be unable to be assigned on the two subsequent availability days in the five day block because the SET days off would not provide the company with the opportunity to assign the Flight Attendant into her/his days off.  

International Location Example:  Set Days off & Shortest pairing assigned at location is three (3) days.

Reserve Block as scheduled

R

R

R

R

R

SET

SET

SET

SET

PTO Request Awarded

R

R

PTO

R

R

SET

SET

SET

SET

CNF applied to subsequent days on in the Reserve block at location with only a three day pairing when followed by SET days off.

R

R

PTO

CNF

CNF

SET

SET

SET

SET

 

At an international location where the shortest pairing is three (3) days, the application of CNF will be programmatically applied to the Reserve schedule and the Reserve minimum will be reduced by the value of each Reserve day to which PTO & CNF is applied.  In this case there are two CNF days & one PTO day.  Reserve minimum will be reduced by 3 X 4:07 or 3 X 4:20, depending on the number of days in the schedule month (30 or 31) – one day for the PTO award and two days for the CNF.

International Location Example:  No Set Days off & Shortest pairing assigned at location is three (3) days.

Reserve Block as scheduled

R

R

R

R

R

OFF

OFF

OFF

OFF

PTO Request Awarded

R

R

PTO

R

R

OFF

OFF

OFF

OFF

CNFnotapplied to subsequent days on in the Reserve block because days off following block are not set days off.

R

R

PTO

R

R

OFF

OFF

OFF

OFF

 

In a situation where the days off following the Reserve block are not set days off, because the Reserve can potentially be assigned into her/his days off, application of CNF is not appropriate nor is it an option for the Flight Attendant. In this case, the Reserve minimum is subject to reduction by the value of a Reserve day for each day of PTO awarded.

North American and Guam Locations

At a North American & Guam locations where the shortest trip assigned is typically a one day pairing, application of CNF in either situation, that is with or without set days off following the Reserve block, is not appropriate nor is this an option for the Flight Attendant because the Reserve is eligible for assignment on the subsequent days of availability in the Reserve block even if the days off following the Reserve block are Set days off.

Example at North American & Guam Locations - Days off where the shortest pairing assigned is a one day pairing:

Reserve Block as scheduled

R

R

R

R

R

SET

SET

SET

SET

PTO Request Awarded

R

R

PTO

R

R

SET

SET

SET

SET

No CNF Applied

R

R

PTO

R

R

SET

SET

SET

SET

 

Example at North American & Guam Location – Days off where shortest pairing assigned is a one day pairing

Reserve Block as scheduled

R

R

R

R

R

OFF

OFF

OFF

OFF

PTO Request Awarded

R

R

PTO

R

R

OFF

OFF

OFF

OFF

No CNF Applied

R

R

PTO

R

R

OFF

OFF

OFF

OFF

 

In both of the above instances, the Reserve minimum is reduced only by the value of the PTO days awarded, either 4:07 or 4:20, depending on whether the schedule month has 30 or 31 days. Use of CNF is not appropriate because the Reserve can be assigned on the remaining days of availability.    

Where the schedule has set days off following the block, the Reserve can be assigned to a combination of two one day or one two day pairing.

Where the schedule does not have set days off following the block, in addition to the assignment to one or two day pairings, the Reserve may also be assigned long pairings into her/his days off consistent with the terms of our JCBA.

Reserve Vacation & Short Blocks

A Reserve who is awarded vacation that creates a short block has a number of options to correct the short block.  

As described in the Reserve guide, a short block is defined as any block of Reserve days that is less than three (3) days of availability resulting from the application of vacation to a Reserve line.  For example, the following is Reserve schedule as originally awarded:

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

R

R

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

R

OFF

OFF

OFF

 

In this example, the Reserve block on Days 1 & 2 and the Reserve Day 9 are both short blocks.  In order to fix these short blocks the Flight Attendant may exercise a number of options.  The following are some examples:

1.    Days 1 & 2 may be moved to Days 10 & 11, creating a 3-day block following vacation.  Days 1 & 2 become days off.

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

OFF

OFF

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

R

R

R

OFF

 

2.    The Reserve may elect to fix the short blocks by applying CNF to Days 1 & 2 and 9, reducing the Reserve minimum by the value of three (3) Reserve days.

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

CNF

CNF

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

CNF

OFF

OFF

OFF

 

3.    The Reserve may elect to slide her/his vacation within five (5) days of being awarded the Reserve schedule in the previous month

2 Day Vacation slide to the Left – Days 7 & 8 become days off, Day 9 fixed by CNF (Reserve minimum reduced by value of one Reserve day)

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

OFF

OFF

CNF

OFF

OFF

OFF

           

1 Day Vacation slide to the Right.  Day three can be a day off with Days 1 & 2 applied CNF (Reserve minimum reduced by value of 2    Reserve days   

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

CNF

CNF

OFF

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

VAC

OFF

OFF

OFF

                       

4.    Alternatively, the Flight Attendant may elect to leave her/his schedule alone and will be eligible to receive Reserve assignments for each of the Reserve days in the short blocks on either side of the vacation period.

What is important to understand is that CNF is applied differently when PTO is awarded than it is when fixing Reserve short blocks created as a result of being awarded a vacation. In conjunction with PTO, use of CNF is not a voluntary action in the same way that CNF can be applied to the Reserve line to fix short blocks.

Reserve Assignment Window

We’ve received a number of questions which lead us to believe confusion has been caused by the second topic addressed in the communication that was sent out by the Local.  In order to clear up any confusion, the following is a review of the Reserve Assignment process 

It is contemplated that the Reserve Preference & Post Preferencing Processing & Release will result in all Reserves having been assigned to one of the following (Section 8.F.1.a – c):

  • A pairing or Standby assignment, or
  • Ready Reserve status, or
  • Release

Further, Reserves should be able to ascertain their Reserve assignment by automated means.  (Section 8.F.1.d.) There may, however, be circumstances where it is the responsibility of the Reserve Flight Attendant to initiate contact with Crew Scheduling to ascertain her/his assignment for the next day. 

Reserves unable to access the automated system or the system malfunctions.  In these cases, the affected Reserve(s) must call the crew desk for assignment. (Section 8.F.2.)

Reserves who are working a pairing at the time the assignments are being made, will have their time accrued position based on their projected time accrued after completing the pairing. If she/he returns after 2400 and did not receive an assignment as part of Reserve Preferencing or the Post Preferencing Process, the Reserve should contact the crew scheduler upon arrival to ascertain her/his assignment for the following day. (Section 8.F.3.)

A Reserve returning from (calling off) sick leave will have her/his assignment determined based on the time she/he calls off sick leave. (Section 8.F.4.a – d.)

1.    If she/he calls off sick leave prior to 1600, she/he will be given an assignment through the preferencing system via the 1930 automated communication and online system;

2.    If she/he calls off sick leave between 1600 and 1930, she/he will be given an assignment via the 1930 automated communication system and online system

3.    If she/he calls off sick leave after 1930 and up to 2400, an assignment will be given to her/him at the time she/he calls off sick leave;

4.    A Flight Attendant calling off sick leave after 2400 shall be considered on sick leave for the calendar day and no assignment will be given.

 

Reserves Blocking In

Reserves who block in after 1930 and who are subsequently released to crew rest and who are on Reserve the following day should make every effort to ascertain if they have been given a Reserve assignment during that call. In the same vein, we have been pressuring the company to ensure that Crew Schedulers should be checking the lines of Flight Attendants calling to block in for an assignment on the following day. This information should be communicated to the Flight Attendant during the call to block in.

Ready Reserve Status

Flight Attendants who are assigned to Ready Reserve status are subject to call at any time and have an obligation to be telephone available and are required to respond to messages left on voicemail and return calls from the Crew Desk.  (Section 8.G.)

While it is true that Flight Attendants on Ready Reserve status after 1930 must be notified either by telephone or through an acknowledgement of any assignment, not every Flight Attendant who does not have an assignment by 1930 is necessarily required to be notified by Crew Scheduling as the examples above indicate. Our JCBA sets forth those circumstances when a Reserve Flight Attendant is required to initiate contact with the company to ascertain her/his assignment and there is nothing in the Local Council communication that is the subject of this e-mail that modifies those provisions of our JCBA. Know when to call!

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