April 29, 2016
On April 4, 2016, Alaska Airlines announced that it is acquiring Virgin America Airlines. The deal still needs regulatory and shareholder approval before proceeding. Upon gaining these approvals, the process of integrating the labor groups begins. As outlined previously, the Virgin America Technicians are nonunion and the Alaska employees are covered by their collective bargaining agreement, and the groups will continue to work separately until operations are integrated into a single entity, which isn’t expected to happen until the 1st quarter of 2018. Operational integration will not be completed until there is an integration of seniority lists and the negotiation of a single collective bargaining agreement covering the combined work groups.
At the Aerospace Maintenance Skills Competition on April 6, 2016, in Dallas, Texas, there were three teams competing made up of AMFA Represented members: one from Southwest Airlines (SWA) and two from Alaska Airlines. After narrowly beating the time (by < 3 seconds) of the Reigning Champions – Team Southwest Airlines – the Alaska Airlines, Seattle Team won the event for best commercial airline division for the first time; now there’s a real rivalry in the making! Congratulations to all of the AMFA Aircraft Maintenance Technicians (AMT) competing at the event; you should all be very proud of your accomplishments.
This month we continued our contentious mediated contract negotiations for the SWA AMT’s contract in Chicago, Illinois. Our next session is scheduled for May 10 – 12, 2016, in Dallas, Texas. We also continued the SWA Facility Maintenance Technician (FMT) negotiations this month and only have a couple of open items remaining. Please be sure to read both of the committees’ full updates on the AMFA National Website and the rebuttal to the Company’s April 28, 2016 propaganda memo.
The Alaska Airlines negotiations also continued this month in Seattle, Washington. We worked through Special Project language in Article 8 and discussed lead bidding and non-technician employees bidding into technician classifications and their assessment periods. The update has been posted to the National Website; our next scheduled session is May 9 – 11, 2016 in Seattle, Washington.
The first week of May we will be holding our National Convention in New Orleans, LA. Your delegates will be addressing member submitted proposals to amend the AMFA Constitution and nominating members for National Office.
For more carrier-specific updates and further information regarding AMFA and the airline industry, please visit the AMFA National Website at www.AMFANational.org and download the AMFA App to your smartphone or tablet. Our most determined efforts will only succeed with your continued support and participation – please stay informed.