CWA Bargaining Update Envoy Air - January 12, 2017

CWA BARGAINING UPDATE FOR ENVOY AIR

January 12, 2017

Happy New Year! This is the year of the Envoy Contract. On January 11th, 12th, and 13th your CWA bargaining committee met with the Envoy bargaining committee. The meeting started with the Union presenting numerous proposals, including: Duration                                         Physical Exams Representation                             Sick Leave Attendance at Hearings                Seniority Definitions                                     Overtime Flow Through Agreement            No Strike/No Lockout Field Work/ TDY                            General The Company presented a counter proposal on Medical Exams and Representation. CWA presented counter proposals on Reduction in Force/ Recall and Union Security. The Company and the Union signed Agreements on Medical Exams, Union Security, and No Strike/No Lockout during the Term of the Contract. We also signed an additional section to add to the Grievance Procedure to expedite issues. The Medical Exam article provides guidelines for when an employee must have a medical exam and a third neutral opinion if the employee’s doctor and the Company doctor do not agree. The Union Security article provides for the deduction of dues from an employee’s paycheck if authorized, a Union orientation period for new employees, and protection against discrimination for Union activity. The No Strike/No Lockout clause provides protection for employees, saying that the company will not lock out employees during the term of the agreement and that employees will not go on strike for the duration of the agreement. We spent a lot of time in conversation about problems in various cities, and we believe we have resolved the issues surrounding those problems. On the last day of bargaining we received word that all the hard work done around airport rage has finally paid off. Now agents will be protected under the same rules as pilots and flight attendants. See the press release below. The Envoy bargaining dates are February 28th, March 1,st and March 2nd. For release January 12, 2017 CWA Campaign Restores Protections for Airline Agents Against Assault and Abuse Washington, D.C. -- A longtime campaign and nationwide effort by the tens of thousands of passenger service agents represented by the Communications Workers of America (CWA) to protect all airline employees from physical and verbal abuse by passengers has succeeded. A law passed in 2002 outlined criminal fines and jail times for the assault of airline and airport employees engaged in security responsibilities. Passenger service agents, although covered by the intent of the law, were denied those protections. CWA brought this issue to then Senator John Kerry in 2002 with clear language that should have been applied to all airport employees with security duties. However, the language was subsequently interpreted to apply only to law enforcement personnel and TSA employees. CWA knew the statute was intended to cover passenger service agents, and took action. As a result of this decision, and CWA’s work to ensure these safeguards, passenger service agents at every airport in the nation now can be assured that “air rage” incidents they face as they perform their critical safety roles will be prosecuted. Agents at all airports regularly endure luggage and equipment thrown at them, as well as punches, slaps, and verbal abuse from angry passengers. Without the protections of federal law, these workers had little recourse and abusive passengers usually faced no consequences. The DOJ ruling is a direct result of CWA passenger service agents’ petitions, letter-writing campaigns, sit-ins, and meetings with members of Congress and officials of the Departments of Justice and Transportation. Agents reacted immediately to the announcement:
“I feel so proud that telling our stories in DC and in Texas made a difference,” said Chris Kress, an American Airlines agent from Dallas-Fort Worth. “Now we need to make sure that management backs us up and enforces this.”
“This is a victory for the employees of the airlines and for our customers and their families. Now no one will have to be exposed to violence in our nation’s airports,” said Tom Robertson, an Envoy agent from Joplin, Missouri.
Barbara Tobin, President of Local 13301 in Pennsylvania added, “This is a huge victory that our Local has been working on for years. I feel like this is something we’ve done for all airline employees!”
Takisha Washington Gower, an agent from Dallas-Ft Worth who lobbied for her fellow Envoy employees celebrated success, “A lot of agents believe Congress doesn’t listen to us, but this is proof that our voices were heard and now agents feel safer on the job, knowing they are protected.”
CWA is moving forward on the next steps to ensure that decision is fully implemented at all airports and by all airlines.