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Wednesday, November 11, 2015 - JCBA Update - LAA Edition
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  • Sick Accrual for LAA Begins to Align with LUS
  • Sick Call Procedures
  • Changes Concerning Leaves of Absence and Approved Time Off
  • Crew Schedule Error 
  • Reimbursement for Learning a Foreign Language
Last week we updated all Flight Attendants on pay protection, rescheduling, and items that we expect will be implemented later in 2016. This week, we’d like to remind you of some of the items being implemented in the near term as well as effective with the New Year. To avoid any confusion, we’re sending separate editions of this update to the Flight Attendants from each legacy airline.

Want to read what was sent to legacy US Airways Flight Attendants? Click Here

Sick Accrual for LAA Flight Attendants Begins to Align with LUS

Beginning January 1, sick accrual for LAA Flight Attendants will increase to 3.5 hours per month (up from 3). This is the second of four scheduled increases (each by 30 minute increments) scheduled through January 1, 2018 – when Flight Attendants at both legacy carriers will accrue 4.5 hours per month.  

If you’re on paid sick status, you’ll continue to accrue sick and vacation time provided you’re meeting the 420 threshold and are available at least 15 days during the month. You are considered “available” (active) while on paid sick status. 

Additionally, you’ll start to see your sick bank get updated at the beginning of each contractual month (reflecting any accrual from the previous month) vs. once a year (in January). 

As a Legacy American Flight Attendant, you’ll be required to continue meeting the 420 hour threshold at the end of the year. If your threshold is not met, all sick hours you initially accrued will be deducted from your sick bank. If you’ve already used those hours, it may result in a negative balance – which will be offset by accruing sick time in 2017.

Sick Call Procedures

Both the 21-day sick substantiation and sick notification language in Section 9.B.2-4 will be implemented later in 2016.

Changes Concerning Leaves of Absence and Approved Time Off

Below, we’ve outlined changes to leaves of absence.  We will be implementing most of Section 25 beginning January 1, 2016 with certain exceptions noted below. 

Bid leaves become VLOAs – Section 25.B
As part of the transition, last Spring we implemented the seniority accrual, benefits, and travel privileges components of VLOAs.

Unlike bid leaves which may be offered and taken in increments of at least seven days up to a full contractual month, VLOAs are normally offered only for an entire bid period. There may also be occasions where we’re able to offer partial month options (either the 1st through the 15th or the 16th through the 30th of the month). Partial bids may be offered and will more like be offered prior to PBS versus after PBS. PBS will be able to distribute the time evenly throughout the month. Additionally, preference will no longer be given to flight attendants who are requesting a leave in conjunction with their vacation.

VLOAs will be awarded by crew base in seniority order as follows:

1. Lineholders requesting full month VLOAs 

If additional leave time is still available, it will be awarded in the following order:

2. Lineholders requesting partial month leaves (1st thru 15th or 16th thru 30th) 
3. Reserves requesting full month VLOAs 
4. Reserves requesting partial month leaves (1st thru 15th or 16th thru 30th) 

We’ll provide more details about these changes and how to bid for VLOAs in the coming weeks – ahead of the January bidding period.

Personal Leaves – Section 25.A
PLOA’s will no longer be proffered by Crew Planning (legacy American). Personal leaves will only be available, upon request, to flight attendants with compelling and unique circumstances. Requests will be made via an online form and evaluated by your Base Manager.

Educational Leaves – Section 25.D
Beginning January 1, 2016 (for classes commencing later in 2016) you may request an Educational leave by contacting the Flight Attendant Service Center (FASC). Educational leaves will no longer be proffered as they have in the past.

To the extent possible, should staffing levels permit, your request will be honored contingent upon you providing proof of enrollment at an accredited institution.  Additionally, upon finishing your studies, you’ll need to provide a copy of your transcript or other proof of course completion.

Other employment while on leave – Section 25.K.5
For non-medical/injury related leaves (including maternity), you are not required to obtain permission for employment outside American Airlines. If you’re on a Medical (including FMLA) or Injury leave, you’ll need to complete a form that is available on Jetnet – which is subject to approval by your manager.

Bereavement Days – Section 25.L.1
We recognize that bereavement is a difficult life event, requiring time to grieve and fulfill family obligations. The JCBA provides time away from work to help manage the difficulties associated with the death of a family member. The new bereavement policy will be as follows:

Upon notification to your Flight Service Manager, Duty Manager (MOD), or (if after hours) to Flight Service Operations at IOC (Daily Ops), you’ll be granted up to 3 consecutive days off if there is a death in your immediate family. Flight Service Operations can be reached at 682-315-7070. 

Immediate family members are:
  • Your spouse
  • Your domestic partner (as defined by Company policy)
  • Your child/children
  • Your step child/step children
  • Your grandchildren
  • Your parents and the parents of your spouse or domestic partner
  • Your step-parents and the step-parents of your spouse or domestic partner
  • Your brother or sister and the brother or sister of your spouse or domestic partner
  • Your grandparents and the grandparents of your spouse or domestic partner
  • Your legal guardian
  • Any relative who resides with you
  • Any member of your household (who resides with you)
Need additional time off?
Your Flight Service Manager will work with you and grant POs to the extent possible. Additionally, PVDs may be taken in conjunction with Bereavement up to your annual allotment of 6. Note: PVDs will be eliminated concurrent with implementation of PBS. 

Additionally, since days coded as bereavement will be paid at a flat rate of 4 hours, it’s possible that your applicable guarantee may be reduced.

Options to use vacation while on a leave of absence as provided for in Section 8 will be implemented concurrent with PBS (estimated in 2017).

Personal Day Policy – Section 25.L.2

The new Personal Day policy outlined in Section 25.L.2 will be implemented concurrent with the future combined attendance policy (estimated later in 2016).

Crew Schedule Error – Section 11.O.4

After origination
Once you’ve originated a sequence, any violation of the Scheduling, Hours of Service, Speaker, Reserve, or International sections of the agreement will result in you being paid “time and a half” for the entire sequence. (100% pay and credit + 50% pay, no credit). (1/1/2016 implementation date)

Exclusions: Crew Schedule errors in the assignment of a sequence prior to sequence origination. Those will be handled in accordance with the procedures in Section 10.

Reimbursement for Learning a Foreign Language – Section 15.I

Beginning January 1, 2016 (for classes commencing later in 2016) you’ll be eligible for reimbursement of up to $1,000 per year subject to the following requirements:
  1. You must take courses at an accredited institution approved in advance by the Company. 
  2. You must successfully complete the course and;
  3. You must pass the language proficiency test by achieving a “Superior” rating on the situational oral proficiency interview (SOPI) portion and a minimum of a “4” of “5” on the reading aloud portion.
For additional information, contact your Flight Service Manager. 

We’ll keep you updated on our progress via email and we’ll also post in the Crew Connections page on Jetnet as well as the APFA website

Until next time,

Joint Scheduling Implementation Committee

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