APFA weekly HotLine update for Friday, October 23, 2009.


  • Airline earnings reporting season wraps up
  • Negotiators focus on cost issues
  • STL Vice Chair Election complete
  • 2010 Benefits Enrollment in final days
  • Retirement seminars in New York and Chicago
  • AA Flight Attendants are true Champions for Children


Following last week’s launch of the fall airline reporting season by Southwest, this week brought profit and loss statements from other major carriers for the three month period of July, August and September 2009. American’s report revealed a quarterly loss of $359 million. Excluding one-time charges relating to aircraft sales and retiring the A300 fleet, the loss would have been less at minus $265 million.

Those also reporting losses for the quarter include, in descending order: Delta at minus $161 million, US Airways at minus $80 million, United at minus $57 million and Continental at minus $18 million. Just as a reminder, Southwest came in at the lowest of the losses at minus $16 million.

The three smaller domestic carriers rounding out the nine majors all reported positive results for the summer quarter, including at the top of the profit heap: Alaska Airlines at a plus $87.6 million, JetBlue with a plus $15 million, and AirTran with a plus $10.4 million.


Reports from the APFA Negotiating Team indicate that substantial progress was made in recent discussions with the company over the cost-out of specific proposals and Article TAs. This followed meetings by members of both teams, their respective financial experts and our Federal Mediator. Through the end of this year, the teams have set an aggressive schedule to focus on issues surrounding agreed to changes in scheduling articles, the contractual language for the TAs thus far achieved, as well as the cost-out of these items. This lays a firmer foundation for the discussions over the final pay issues, now on the horizon.

As talks move forward, the last few weeks have seen APFA Negotiators and local reps holding council and InfoRep meetings in base cities to continue coordination of OUR TURN Around Campaign, which is now gearing up for a major membership action in the coming weeks. As part of this action, the APFA Team communications sub-committee has completed an informational pamphlet for the membership, detailing our positions in relationship to the company’s in several contractual areas of pay, benefits and work rules. It is important for members to know where we stand and how we plan on reaching our goal of a ratifiable contract that restores our standard of living and brings us the financial stability and security we need and deserve. Watch for the pamphlet arriving in mailboxes beginning next week.

Be sure you are armed with the facts and with your GOT UNION / GOT GUTS yellow and red disk for your union pin. Wear only your APFA pin—now with the yellow GOT UNION side of the disk behind it—and your Flight Attendant wings on your uniform. As we reach this critical stage of bargaining, now is the time to show clearly that we stand together and behind our Negotiating Team and our Union. Request a replacement for your pin and/or disk through the Membership Department by emailing: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or calling headquarters extension 8153.

While online, if your name is not yet on the APFA Virtual Picket line, add it today. Go to: apfavirtualpicket.com

Share the APFA YouTube channel with your friends and family. Our several short videos describe our needs, our wants and our struggle. Visit: youtube.com/aaflightattendants


The National Ballot Committee has certified the results of the STL Vice Chairperson election that was conducted under the supervision of the U.S. Department of Labor. The results are as follows:

  • Gregory Bertolini received 66 votes,
  • Miles Gauntt received 36 votes,
  • Karen Marshall received 38 votes, and
  • Nena Martin received 387 votes.

Nena Martin will assume office immediately for the remainder of the two-year term of office ending March 31, 2011.

For a complete ballot breakdown, go to the Elections and Balloting page of APFA.org.


Just over one week remains for the 2010 Benefits Enrollment, which began on October 1 and will run through October 31. The APFA Health Department recommends that members go online and review their benefits selections. Keep a printed copy of both your current (2009) elections and your elections for the coming year.

Note that the preferred Health Care Administrator will be changing in nine states: AZ (Arizona), CO (Colorado), ME (Maine), MA (Massachusetts), MT (Montana), NH (New Hampshire), NJ (New Jersey), NY (New York), and VT (Vermont). If you live in one of these states and are on the Point of Service (POS) plan, it is important to make sure that your doctors are in the network that you select. Employees who elect the POS plan will have the option of choosing any of the three plan administrators. Employees who elect the Standard plan will be covered by the preferred plan administrator for their state.

Please review the plans carefully to determine which is best suited to your needs. Additional information is available in the 2010 Benefits Decision Guide that was sent out to all employees. The information is also available on Jetnet.


AA recently sent out a letter regarding the Supplemental Medical Plan. This plan was initially offered in 2002 on a one-time only basis. In 2010 the premiums will be increased from $5 to $15 monthly, and there will now be a $250 deductable. This is a significant increase. While everyone must evaluate her or his own financial and insurance needs, please keep in mind that if you drop this coverage you will not have the opportunity to get it back unless you get married or add a domestic partner. Supplemental Medical is a “pay-as-you-go” plan, meaning that you are paying for coverage that you currently have. If you drop the coverage there will be no refund of past premiums.

Members with questions about benefits enrollment or Supplemental Medical are asked to contact the APFA Health Department at headquarters extension 8301, or via email to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please keep in mind that call volume is increased during this season, while our representative staffing is reduced from that of previous years. Most calls will go to voicemail and will be returned as quickly as possible.


Flight Attendant-specific retirement seminars are scheduled for:

  • LGA on Tuesday, October 27, from 2:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the 3rd floor Conference Room.
  • JFK on Wednesday, October 28, from 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. in the DuPont Center, Terminal 8.
  • ORD on Thursday, October 29, from 10:30 a.m. to noon in the Flight Service Conference Room, K19 Ops.

APFA Retirement Specialist Patrick Hancock will be present at the meetings and will be available for one-on-one Q&A..

Discussions include pension selections and retirement benefits, including insurance and travel. To get the most out of these helpful and popular seminars, print out and bring your personal pension estimate and plan calculation formulas from Jetnet. Flight Attendants from all bases are welcome to attend and no reservations are required.

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Remember that there are currently 1,415 members on furlough and awaiting recall.

Words of praise for the efforts of American Airlines Flight Attendants highlight the Champions for Children Fall 2009 newsletter, from the UNICEF/Change for Good campaign. Read the latest information about this voluntary, Flight Attendant-run program, find out how you can participate and learn about upcoming initiatives through the two-page flyer available for download. (click here)

Visit all the links under the heading “APFA Supports” on the main page of APFA.org, including:

Wings Foundation // Airline Ambassadors // UNICEF/Change for Good