September 30, 2014
This month started off with the Southwest Airlines (SWA) Facility Maintenance Technician (FMT) negotiations in Dallas, Texas. I was able to attend this session and appreciate all of the work the committees have done in these negotiations. During the following FMT session later in the month, the Company presented our Committee with a bundled proposal that addressed multiple articles; our Committee is crafting a comprehensive response to their proposal. Aircraft Maintenance Technician (AMT) negotiations also continued this month and the negotiation updates (video and written) for all sessions have been posted to the AMFA National Website. The next scheduled FMT negotiations are October 13-14, and the next scheduled AMT negotiations are October 15-16, 2014, in Dallas, Texas.
On September 19, 2014, the Region I Director, the Alaska Airlines Airline Representatives, and I met with the Company to conduct the Annual Technician Wage Review as required in Article 23 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA). After conducting an internal relative-position review of all the labor groups on the property and an external technician relative-position review of the listed competitors, it was concluded that this year’s guaranteed one and one-half percent (1.5%) raise would satisfy the requirements of the CBA. The new rates will go into effect on October 11, 2014.
As we continue work and hold discussions with our members regarding our Safety Initiative, a few themes are becoming constant. It is apparent that there are not enough technicians to satisfactorily perform the work packages that are being assigned, and our maintenance programs are being revised in an attempt to alter the way maintenance has been successfully conducted in the past. Additionally, after taking care of minor maintenance tasks on through flights, technicians are feeling pressured as to whether or not to take a delay in order to properly document the maintenance completed. I cannot state more emphatically that it is imperative that you do take the time to properly document all of the maintenance you perform. The documentation is your receipt for work performed, and it plays a major part in generating “the data” that is used by the airlines to develop their maintenance programs. Furthermore, as airlines are now being run by number-crunchers this data needs to be as reliable as possible. Please do not inadvertently help generate bad data. If the task is not documented it is as if the task never happened and there is no record being generated that demonstrates the actual work that we are really doing for the airlines.
For more carrier specific updates and further information regarding AMFA and the airline industry, please visit the AMFA National Website at www.AMFANational.org. Our most determined efforts will only succeed with your continued support and participation – please stay informed.