MEC Grievance 36–099–02–048–17 16 hour duty day

A Flight Attendant’s duty day is limited to a maximum of 16 hours under our Contract. Flight Attendants need to be aware of this right and how to protect it, as Crew Scheduling has been interpreting our Contract in favor of the Company. As a result, AFA has filed an MEC Grievance on behalf of all members.

Section 6.F.2. of our Contract states:

At no time will the Company require a Flight Attendant to be on duty more than sixteen (16) hours, for any reason, without approval from the Flight Attendant.

Crew Scheduling’s interpretation of this language has been that as long as a Flight Attendant is projected under 16 hours of duty when the aircraft door closes the Company can fly a Flight Attendant more than 16 hours, regardless of weather, ATC, ground stops, etc. AFA strongly disagrees with this reading of our Contract. Therefore, we have filed Grievance 36–099–02–048–17, which will be heard at the September Grievance Hearing.

In the meantime, Flight Attendants should be aware that Crew Scheduling will not be proactive in making sure you do not exceed 16 hours of duty. Unless you want to waive your 16-hour maximum you should call Crew Scheduling both before boarding and, if they still have not projected you over 16 hours, after boarding and immediately before the door is closed. This is provide you the best possible chance of enforcing the 16-hour maximum and evidence that you tried to do so. AFA asks all Flight Attendants who unwillingly exceed 16-hours of duty to contact a Union Representative.

Sick Time and CDOs

Last week your AFA MEC filed a Grievance over how the company is charging sick time for CDO lineholders. For those Flight Attendants who bid a CDO line it is important that you understand how the company pays and deducts sick time.

For the majority of CDO lineholder sick calls the company has been paying sick time correctly. The exception is trips picked up from open time. In that instance, when a CDO lineholder calls in sick for an open time trip (assume he/she has sick time), the Company is not paying sick hours above adjusted guarantee and the CDO lineholder’s sick bank is charged for the value of the trip.

As an example, Flight Attendant Sally is awarded a CDO line with 55 block hours (her guarantee is 75). She drops one of the CDO trips worth 4 hours credit hours and a proration 5.45 credit hours, making her adjusted guarantee 69.55 hours. She then adds another CDO from open time, also worth 4 credit hours and 5.45 proration credit. Her block hours are back up to 55 and her guarantee is back at 75. If Sally calls in sick for the open time trip she added, her guarantee is deducted 5.45 hours and her sick back is charged for the 4 hours (which she was never paid). She ends the month with 69.55 hours and 4 hours less in her sick bank.

On May 12, 2017, the MEC filed Grievance #36–099–02–018–17 for this violation of our sick time provisions and our Letter of Agreement 6. Most emphatically, no Flight Attendant’s sick bank should be charged for sick time if they were not paid for it!

Until the Grievance is resolved, CDO lineholders need to be aware that the Company will continue to short them for sick calls from open time trips. CDO lineholders may shy away from picking up open time trips. Trips that are traded from other Flight Attendants will still be paid correctly – just not trips that come directly from open time. Therefore, it is a safer option to pick up trips from fellow Flight Attendants versus open time.

We will keep members updated on the status of this Grievance. In the meantime, if any CDO lineholders experience sick call problems with open time trips, please inform your Local Council or the MEC.