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Clarifying Deadhead Reschedule to Work

Date: February 19, 2019

Earlier this year AFA and United reached an agreement as part of the Implementation Dispute Resolution process to address the
contractual process by which a Flight Attendant may be re-assigned from deadhead to working status on the same flight. As a reminder and to clarify what has previously been published we will review the agreed upon procedures.

Management may reschedule deadheading Flight Attendants to work the flight in order to:  

1.    Maintain Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) required number of Inflight Crew, including any required augmentation, and

2.    Reschedule Flight Attendants up to United’s Established Staffing Guidelines (“ESG”) to prevent understaffing.

It is important to note that nothing in the settlement limits United’s right to supplement additional staffing above the ESG through the creation of additional open positions, that is pairings that are made available to the Membership via open time.

Review the following Examples:  

Paragraph 1.a (Domestic). – North American flight CUN to EWR – a 777Q requires eight (8) Flight Attendants. For some reason a Flight Attendant who was scheduled to work the flight becomes unavailable leaving the scheduled number of crew at seven (7).  In this circumstance, the company may reschedule a deadheading Flight Attendant, if available, in inverse order of seniority, to cover the open position and to return the staffing to the FAA requirement of eight (8).

Paragraph 1.a (International). – International Flight from SFO to SYD on 777Q requires eight (8) Flight Attendants plus augmented staffing of two for the duty period of 15:45. The ESG requires 11 Flight Attendants for a full flight. The company may reschedule deadheading Flight Attendants to the ESG of 11 Flight Attendants to meet the FAA staffing or the ESG. (It is understood that no flight may depart with less than the number of Flight Attendants required by the FAA for the aircraft type and/or duty period.)

Paragraph 2– Supplemental staffing. In a situation where the company were to determine that additional staffing above the ESG is warranted for any flight, the company may not reschedule a Flight Attendant from deadhead to working status. They may, however, create additional pairings that are to be placed in open time and made available for trade or pick up. In the event those positions are not filled by trades or pick up, the company may not reassign a Flight Attendant from deadhead to working status to fill the position that is above the ESG.

Questions should be directed to your Local Council Representative.


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