UAL Teamster Mechanics and Related Ratify New Contract, Paving the Way for Joint Contract Discussions with CAL Counterparts

Teamster aircraft mechanics and related workers at United Airlines are ending the year on a high note with a new contract that was overwhelmingly ratified on Thursday. The new agreement; that provides for significant wage increases, maintenance of health care benefits and enhanced job security protections covers about 5,500 aircraft mechanics and related employees throughout the United States.

“This marks a historic day for Teamster United mechanics,” said Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa. “They stood united for a better future and for big improvements at United. They should feel proud of what they’ve accomplished.”

“My congratulations go out to the negotiating committee for their dedication and perseverance in negotiating a strong Teamster contract. These hardworking Teamster mechanics and related workers deserve all the improvements negotiated in this agreement,” said Teamsters Airline Division Director Captain David Bourne.

Passage of the agreement is a major step toward achieving the ultimate goal of a single combined contract for the 9,000 Teamster mechanics at a merged United Airlines and Continental Airlines.

"Passage of this agreement was a real breakthrough and a major step toward achieving the ultimate goal of a single combined contract for the 9,000 mechanics at the new airline,” said Roger Apana, a mechanic from Honolulu and a member of the negotiating committee. “It feels good that we were able to achieve a $11,500 signing bonus along with restoring many of the items that were conceded in bankruptcy and securing the best job protections we've had in our 70-year history."

In response to the vote, the following message was sent to all UAL Mechanics and Related by their Negotiating Committee on Friday:

Yesterday the tentative agreement reached in November was ratified by a majority of the membership. The agreement will become effective January 1st 2012, but will require some work to implement transition items as described in LOA #27. There have been many questions about the transition to the new agreement including; when do the pay rates take effect, when will the overtime balances be zeroed and when will the bid areas become active?

The parties recognized that this agreement would require much work to implement and that not all items would be effective day 1. LOA #27 states “As the parties discussed and agreed during the negotiations resulting in the 2010-2013 United-IBT Technicians and Related Agreement (also referred to in this Letter as “the New Agreement&rdquo, there will be technical and logistical impediments to fully implementing and migrating to the New Agreement as soon as the parties would like.” However migration to the new agreement is not an open ended process and should occur quickly. It is expected that completion of all the transition items will occur within the first several months of the year.

PAY

The pay rates take effect 1-1-12. This includes the double time and a half for New Years Day, the double time rate for overtime and the time and three quarters rate for field services. The signing bonus is anticipated to be paid around the same time as the second pay check in the month of January.

ADMINISTRATIVE CHANGES

The first item that will not take place immediately will be the holiday move provision for New Years Day. Zeroing of the overtime hours requires changes to the various manpower computer programs and the establishment of new bid areas that are required in the agreement. This provision may happen at different times for different bid areas. For example line stations that only have a few bid areas may be able to transition quicker because there will not be a need to establish new bid areas. Field service is a provision tied to the establishment of bid areas and overtime so the selection process will continue as is until these items are addressed. However international trips will now be selected in the same manner as domestic trips.

MOVING FORWARD

Transition information will be made available as soon as possible to each station’s Business Agents and Chief Stewards and posted on the respective Local and International websites along with email blasts to the membership. The systemwide Chief Steward’s weekly Thursday call and the Friday Business Agent’s calls will be an integral part of discussing these changes and the expected target date for implementation. Look for more information beginning next week on expected timelines for the implementation of the various transition items.

Airline Industry News

Governmental and Regulatory

Lawmakers in the House and Senate have not reached agreement on the Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill and remain at odds over the bill's labor provision…A union representing pilots at UPS has filed a lawsuit arguing that cargo pilots should be included in the new pilot-fatigue rules issued by the Federal Aviation Administration.

Industry and Labor

A group of business leaders in Miami say that bankruptcy filing of AMR Corp. will help American Airlines become a better competitor…The Transportation Security Administration's 40,000 screeners now have the right to vote on collective bargaining rights. The TSA's decision to give the workers the rights will allow them to bargain over vacation time, work shifts, transfers and some other employment issues…Workers are not the culprit in the AMR bankruptcy, they insist…

Shares of AMR Corp. will be delisted from the New York Stock Exchange before the market opens January 5th. AMR shares were trading at 52 cents when the market closed on Thursday, one month after the company filed for bankruptcy on Nov. 29th.


The offices of the Airline Division will be closed on Monday, January 2nd for the New Years Day Holiday. On behalf of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, the Airline Division and our staff, we wish each of you and your families a Happy and Prosperous New Year.



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