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Releasing Sick Leave Pairing for 10-Day COVID Period

Date: January 7, 2022

Under the terms of our Contract, Flight Attendants who call on sick leave for a trip pairing will have that assignment placed into open time.  As a lineholder, our Contract further provides that the Company may not subsequent pairings from our schedule into open time earlier than eight (8) hours prior to scheduled departure, except when the lineholder has advised the Company that she/he will be on sick leave for a longer period of time. 

Flight Attendants having a confirmed positive COVID test are out of the schedule for a period of 10-days and while on sick leave for COVID related illnesses, we do have the ability to release pairings from our schedule well in advance of the eight (8) hour point at which these pairings normally fall of the schedule and into open time.  At Flight Attendant’s discretion, we may call to advise the Company we will be out for a longer period of time and request that other pairings we do not expect to fly be released into open time.  Given the recent increase in the number of COVID+ test results keeping many of us away from work, we strongly recommend that each of us evaluate our schedules and, where possible, release any affected pairing.

By getting these pairings into open time, we create opportunities for others to pick up these pairings to increase time, as well as ensuring these pairings are available for assignment to Reserves with more than minimum notice.

Keep in mind that although Flight Attendants have the latitude to make the decision on whether or not to release their trips early, we don’t want to create an expectation that this must be done.  There is no requirement to do so, especially in those circumstances where there is an expectation of being able to fly those trips at some point in the future. 

We should not misinterpret what is being said and no Flight Attendant should be pressured into releasing a pairing(s) on her/his line that she/he believes they may be able to fly.  Having the knowledge that these pairings can be released earlier than eight (8) hours is important and by doing so, under the right circumstances, this action can have a direct impact on the quality of life for our flying partners.  For all of these reasons, we are asking everyone to assess your personal circumstances and, where possible, to act to notify the company to release any pairings for which you will not be eligible to fly as a result of a COVID+ test result as soon as possible.

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