APFA Special Hotline
Friday, January 13, 2017

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  • Uniform Grievance Rejected by the Company - LAA/LUS
  • 2016 Sick/Vacation Accrual - LAA
  • Voluntary Leave of Absence Ballot – LAA
  • Vacation Buyback – LUS
  • New Hire Involvement & Retirement Seminars in February - LAA/LUS
  • APFA Employee Assistance Program (EAP) - LAA/LUS
  • Martin Luther King Day Observed at HDQ - LAA/LUS

Uniform Grievance Rejected by the Company - LAA/LUS
APFA received official notice yesterday from the Company that they have rejected the Presidential Grievance on uniforms filed on Dec 21, 2016. You may have seen this reported in the media as early as Wednesday before APFA had received a hard copy of the Company’s decision.
The process for a Presidential Grievance (JCBA Sections 30 and 31) is below: We are currently on Step 3

1. Filing - The APFA National President may protest, in writing, to the Vice President of Labor Relations, of the Company any action of the Company or any alleged misapplication or misinterpretation of the JCBA within forty five (45) days after such alleged action, misapplication or misinterpretation has been ascertained.

2. Decision – The Vice President of Labor Relations shall evaluate such grievance and render a decision, in writing, within twenty (20) days after it has been received.

3. Appeal – If the decision of the Vice President of Labor Relations is not satisfactory, an appeal may be made, in writing, within twenty (20) days to the (SBA) System Board of Adjustment.

4. Headquarters Pre Arbitration Conference – Within forty five (45) days of the APFA’s submission of a Presidential Grievance to the System Board, a Headquarters Pre Arbitration Conference shall be held with the APFA National President or her/his designee(s) and the Vice President of Labor Relations, or her/his designee(s). At such conference, the parties shall exchange all documents known to the parties at the time which are used in support of their respective positions. For confidentiality purposes, and, at the option of either party, all names and other identifying information may be expunged from any such documents exchanged.

5. Appointment of Arbitrator/Hearing Dates – The Commissioner and the Deputy Commissioner shall, within forty five (45) days from the date of the APFA’s request for arbitration, agree on the appointment of an arbitrator to chair the System Board and schedule the arbitration hearing date of the Presidential Grievance. The scheduled hearing date may be outside this forty five (45) day time limit.

6. Location of Arbitration Hearing – The System Board shall meet in the city where the General Office of American Airlines Inc. are maintained, unless a different location is agreed upon by the Commissioner and Deputy.

7. Notice of Arbitration Hearing Docket – Presidential Grievances shall be scheduled for an arbitration hearing at such place and time agreed upon by the Commissioner and the Deputy Commissioner. The Commissioner shall distribute the necessary dockets, in writing, with the time and place of such hearing, to the System Board members and to the parties to the dispute.

2016 Sick/Vacation Accrual - LAA

The Company has completed its preliminary run for the 2016 sick/vacation accruals. This information is now available for viewing in your HISK/L. It is highly recommended that you view this record to confirm accuracy of accruals.

If you discover any discrepancies, contact the Flight Attendant Service Center (FASC) prior to 1800 CT on January 17, 2017 for assistance with making corrections to your HISK/L record. You can speak with any representative in Administration at the FASC by calling 1-800-VIP-CREW, log in, press # for departments, then 6, and then 3.

The final accrual run will be completed on January 18, 2017.

When you pull up your HISK/L in DECS, take a look at the SK/VC column to see whether or not you accrued either sick and vacation benefits in a particular bid month. A “Y” indicator means that you did accrue that specific benefit; while a “N” indicator means that you did not accrue that specific benefit. Additionally, a “L” indicator means that you were on a Voluntary Leave of Absence (VLOA) in that bid month.

As a reminder, Flight Attendants accrue sick and vacation while on a VLOA, even though such absence reduces the 420 threshold by 35 hours. Be sure to move down to the summary section of the HISK/L to view whether or not you met your personal threshold for sick and vacation accruals. So long as your TTL FT PAID HOURS meets or exceeds your ELIGIBILITY HOURS, you are considered as having met your personal threshold.

The 2016 sick accrual rate for LAA Flight Attendants was 3 hours and 30 minutes per month; however, the 2017 sick accrual rate will be 4 hours per month.

Review the published document, Thresholds 101, to help you determine whether or not you were eligible for sick and vacation accrual in a specific bid month.

Voluntary Leave of Absence Ballot – LAA

The ballot for February 2017 Voluntary Leave of Absences (VLOAs) is now available on the Crew Resources page of the Flight Service website. The Company has stated that most bases will have a limited number of VLOAs. The deadline to submit a ballot for February VLOAs is January 17, 2016 at 0900 CT.

Vacation Buyback – LUS

The annual vacation buyback period is now open and will close on January 22, 2017 at 1200 CT. To exercise the yearly vacation buyback, log into Crew Portal and click on My Information, then Vacations. You will be taken to your Annual Vacation Bid & Award (AVBA) summary. Click on the tab Add/Edit Yearly Buyback to enter the number of accrued vacation days you would like to use as vacation buyback.

Seven or more vacation days used as buyback will be paid at a rate of 4 hours per day at your applicable pay rate. If you use less than seven vacation days, each day will be paid at a rate of 3 hours and 30 minutes at your applicable pay rate. Vacation buyback will be paid out on the first paycheck in June at your applicable pay rate at that time.

New Hire Involvement & Retirement Seminars in February - LAA/LUS

The PHA5E Team and the APFA Retirement Department, in conjunction with LGA base leadership, are joining together to co-host a series of New Hire Involvement and Retirement Seminars in New York City crew bases in early February.

•  EWR – February 8th, 1200-1500 local base time, in the baggage claim meeting room adjacent to Flight Service operations

•  JFK Hampton Inn – February 9th, 1100-1400 local base time.  The hotel offers a shuttle service from JFK Airport and free parking (

•  LGA - February 10th, 1100-1400 local base time, in the 3rd floor conference room above Flight Service

The first hour will be dedicated to PHA5E, the 5th phase of flight…the beginning of your career! The PHA5E presentation, headed by coordinators Allie Malis and Reese Cole, provides an avenue for our newer Flight Attendants to get involved with APFA. We are the future! For many of us, APFA is our first labor union. APFA has helped shape the aviation industry and without our union behind us, our profession would look very different. Come learn about: 

• How APFA operates
• How APFA can help you
• How you can get involved with APFA
• What we are fighting for now
• Any questions you need answered!

The more active the membership, the more unified we stand. PHA5E welcomes all Flight Attendants– our strength is in our numbers!

The last two hours will be scheduled for the retirement seminar “Good Slide!”, presented by Ron Harris and Patrick Hancock from the APFA Retirement Department, covering a wide range of issues including:

• Retiree Travel
• 401k
• Pensions
• Medicare

LAA Flight Attendants with a pension can print out an estimate in the Pension Service Center on Jetnet.  LUS Flight Attendants with a PBGC pension can request an estimate in the mail from by calling 800-400-7242.

These seminars are being sponsored by LGA base president Ellen Eherts and Vice President JoAnn Matley Sheehan and are open to all members, regardless of seniority or base. It’s never too early to start planning for retirement, and it’s never too late to start getting involved with APFA!

Questions can be directed to:

Ellen Eherts, LGA Base President (
JoAnn Matley Sheehan, LGA Vice President (
Allie Malis, APFA Government Affairs Representative (
Ron Harris, APFA Retirement Specialist (

APFA Employee Assistance Program (EAP) - LAA/LUS

The Employee Assistance Program is available for 24/7 support for any mental health issue, even those not directly related to our job. Last week's shooting in FLL is a prime example. Even though this unconscionable act, thankfully, did not directly threaten the safety of our crews and colleagues, such tragic events are on the rise, and they can trigger certain psychological and emotional responses.

If you are experiencing difficulty functioning at work or home, or if you have a family member experiencing difficulties, please know there is help and YOU ARE NOT ALONE. The EAP Peer Support Volunteers & the Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT) is available for confidential help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 

As Flight Attendants, we understand the profession and related stressors that may contribute to your issues. Our goal is to promote your well-being by providing a safe place for you to find the right community resources to get you the help you need.

For CONFIDENTIAL ASSISTANCE call: (800) 998-8194. You may also reach our office by calling (817) 540-0108 ext. 8701 or email at If you need immediate assistance you can also reach John McCloskey, National EAP Specialist at (562) 233-2307, 24/7.  All voice mail messages will be returned as promptly as possible and will remain confidential.

Martin Luther King Day Observed at HDQ - LAA/LUS

APFA will be closed Monday, January 16th, 2017 in observance of Martin Luther King Day. Live Chat will be available during normal weekend hours of 0900 - 1700 CT.

Have a great weekend!


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About APFA: 
APFA is a strong and independent Union comprised of 25,000 hard-working Flight Attendants of American Airlines. Like any organization, opinions and interests are varied. What makes APFA unique, though, is its highly democratic process which allows members to make their voices heard through the direct election of their Union representatives and voting power on all Constitutional changes. APFA is proud of its membership’s diversity, passion, and advocacy.

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