|AMFA Locals and Members
National President’s Monthly Update for March 2023
April 14, 2023
Your dedication to prioritizing safety every time you touch an aircraft makes you critical to the success of any aviation maintenance operation. I encourage you to recognize the importance of the responsibilities and work you perform day-to-day: increase awareness of performing your jobs safely; maintaining compliance; be aware of your surroundings; and working safely side-by-side with your co-workers. “Engineers and technicians have provided the foundation of air safety that airlines not only rely on but trade on, Guardians of Air Safety.”- Paul “Wookie” Cousins, Former President of the Australian Licensed Aircraft Engineers Association (ALAEA).
We must realize our immense responsibility as FAA-certified airmen to exercise our judgment on the airworthiness of aircraft and equipment. As highlighted in the Mechanic’s Creed, we, therefore, pledge unyielding adherence to these precepts for the advancement of aviation and for the dignity of our [craft]. Please utilize your carrier’s Safety Reporting System (SRS) when you feel there are safety or compliance concerns while performing your job. In addition to your carrier’s SRS, the FAA Hotline may be utilized to report concerns about aviation safety in the US: https://hotline.faa.gov/.
We are happy to announce another new addition to AMFA. On March 31, 2023, the Canadian Industrial Relations Board (CIRB) certified AMFA as the bargaining agent for the Aircraft Maintenance Engineers and skilled trade groups at WestJet. We have reached out to senior leadership at WestJet (WJA) and will be scheduling dates to discuss the transition and commencing negotiations under Section 50 of the Canadian Labour Code. Your AMFA-WJA Transition Committee is in place, led by Interim AMFA-WJA Airline Representative (ALR) Ian Evershed, who is the main point of contact for the group. The ALR oversees the enforcement of status quo work rules, pay, and benefits and is a voting member of the Negotiating Committee. There are also Interim Area Representatives who assist the ALR on the floor and help distribute internal communications. We look forward to starting the collective bargaining process and working to increase the standards in the WJA workplace. AMFA’s focus will be on recognizing the importance of our skilled trades and their contribution to the airline’s safe and successful operation. For further updates and information, please visit the WestJet page of the AMFA National website.
On March 2, 2023, AMFA filed an application with the CIRB seeking representation of the AMEs and skilled trade groups at Air Canada. AMFA is honored to have this opportunity to represent and advocate for this professional group who want to be part of AMFA. We are working diligently to secure an opportunity for this group to vote for the union representation of their choosing, to free them from a tyrannical industrial union that has, time and again, put power and financial interests ahead of the interests of the workers they are obligated to protect. We anticipate more AMEs in Canada to pursue AMFA representation. Stay tuned to the Organizing page for more information on organizing drives.
AMFA-L3 Harris MAS (L3) members have been busy since AMFA’s certification. The successful efforts of Will Abbott, Region II Director; Mark Manning, Interim Airline Representative; AMFA’s legal team at Seham, Seham, Meltz & Petersen, LLP; Edward Jones Financial Group; and L3 Harris MAS Management have transitioned the IAM Pension Plan to an L3-funded Group Retirement Savings Plan. Local 4 will soon be conducting a special election to fill the L3 ALR position in accordance with the Local 4 Bylaws. Stay tuned to the AMFA Local 4 website for election details.
The AMFA and Alaska Airlines (AS) Negotiating Committees held a bargaining session on March 28-30, and the next session is scheduled for April 25-27 in Seattle. In addition to Section 6 negotiations, the ALRs continue working with the Company and Arbitrator on the Roster Apps Arbitration case. Also, AMFA and the Company have come to an agreement on notification before hiring new technicians; there will be an unfilled bid within 30 days of the Company’s decision to hire off the street. The following stations have unfilled vacancies and will begin hiring off the street: ANC, JFK, KTN, SAN, SEA, and SFO.
The AMFA and Sun Country Airlines (SCA) Negotiating Committees held a bargaining session on March 21-23 and are scheduled to meet again on April 4-6 in Minneapolis. In the evening after Day 1, your AMFA representatives attended a membership meeting near the airport. Together with the members, we discussed many union issues and the status of negotiations. Thank you to the members who were able to attend, and we hope to see more of you at future meetings.
AMFA and Spirit Airlines (NKS) held the fourth session of Section 6 negotiations on March 7-9 in Dallas and are scheduled to meet again on May 3-5 in Fort Lauderdale. Stay engaged, remain informed, and continue to support the Negotiating Committee as that support increases the Committee’s ability to bargain a CBA your hard work deserves.
The AMFA-SWA Aircraft Maintenance Technicians (AMTs) have started the contract proposal process to provide input to the Negotiating Committee as they prepare for negotiations scheduled to start in August. The Company continues to hire experienced and qualified aircraft technicians to achieve adequate staffing levels throughout the system.
Local 14 has concluded a special election to fill the recently vacated AMFA-Horizon Air (QX) ALR position, and Chuck Clum has been duly elected. Chuck has engaged in many talks with management to enforce the CBA, including grievances and arbitrations.
This month we would like to highlight the value of our Professional Standards Program. What are Professional Standards (Pro-Standards)? It is a commitment among members and leaders to maintain the highest degree of professionalism, safety, and standards. When individuals have conflicts with one another or feel a co-worker is not adhering to standards, they previously had no one other than management to intervene. Today, the Local Professional Standards Committee (PSC) can help to correct possible differences, resolve interpersonal disputes, and enhance professional skills. We believe that this Committee will remove the burden of dealing with everyday conflicts from management and will protect the standing of our craft.
I ask you to continue to be vigilant and be engaged with your union and officers. In doing so, monitor your respective carrier page on the AMFA National website for airline-specific details. Our most determined efforts will only succeed with your support and participation – please stay engaged and informed.