Be involved with your future!
Representing members at Southwest Airlines
1949 days 14 hours 22 minutes 40 seconds
Since we have had a new contract!
First, I’d like to point out something of which some of you may not be aware. Our fine mechanics were among the other employee groups who stood shoulder to shoulder with us while we all tried to wrap up protracted negotiations. Negotiations have concluded for all major employee groups except for our mechanics, as the Company continues a scorched-earth policy. I know that you all appreciate our mechanics’ dedication to their profession and their quality of work as much as I do. No one in the world appreciates a good aircraft mechanic as much as a Pilot, and AMFA has our full support.
–John Weaks, President, Southwest Airlines Pilots Association
News, Updates and Opportunities
Stay updated by registering for Email Updates here.
How to Stay Informed
There are several sources for information and updates at both the National and Local level. Read about them here.
Due to the hurricane in Houston, there is a need to house displaced AMFA members and their families. If you have available space in your home and would be willing to help, please contact Local 11 President Dale Dixon.
We have a Go Fund Me page for financial donations to members of Local 18 who are financially impacted.
Ken Hackett Reinstated
From Craig Hamlet, ALR – Yesterday, I had the distinct honor and privilege of informing our Brother, Ken Hackett, that the Arbitrator had reinstated him as an Aircraft Maintenance Technician at Southwest Airlines. The ruling also orders the Company to provide Ken with full back‐pay to the date of his termination. It is a complete vindication of Ken’s actions as an employee, and as an AMFA Shop Rep. I could not be happier for Ken and his family.
Rich Johnson was sworn in on December 14 as the new MX Control Area Representative. Thanks to Rich for stepping up, and thanks to Tim Ananiadis for his previous service.
Local 11 Shop Rep Nominations
Nominations are now being accepted for the position of Shop Reps. Please consider helping Local 11 in this vital function. Nominations must be received by Local 11 by midnight on December 27. Get a nomination form here.
22Kill Raffle Winners
Tickets were drawn for the 22Kill raffle at the final GMM meeting on December 14.
Alternate AMFA-SWA ASAP ERC Representative Election Notice
Due to the recent election of the Alternate AMFA–SWA Aviation Safety Action Program (ASAP) Event Review Committee (ERC) Representative to the Primary position, AMFA National is calling for nominations from Locals representing the Southwest Airlines (SWA) membership to fill the vacated Alternate position for the remainder of the term.
The voting period for this election will begin at 3PM ET on December 12, 2017, and it will conclude at 10AM ET on January 9, 2018.
In an effort to provide AMFA members with basic information about candidates for union office, AMFA National has offered all candidates in this election an opportunity to submit a candidate profile along with their picture. Candidate Profiles may be viewed on the Elections and Referenda page by clicking here.
AMFA National Annual Membership Survey Notice
In accordance with Article IX, Section 3 of the AMFA Constitution, the National Executive Council is conducting the annual survey of the AMFA membership.
Survey notices and instructions will be mailed to eligible members at the address on record with AMFA National on November 21, 2017. Any eligible member who has not received a survey notice by November 30, 2017, may request one by contacting the Administration Director at 720-744-6629 no later than December 19, 2017.
National Director November 2017 Monthly Update
AMFA-SWA AMT Negotiations Update Regarding ETOPS
Southwest Airlines (SWA) has, once again, demonstrated its lack of respect for the aircraft maintenance technician (AMT) group and our contract. The days of Herb’s SWA are long gone, and the current management would prefer to breach your contract first and arbitrate, as opposed to engaging in a productive collective bargaining relationship. It is, quite simply, disgusting.
On October 20, 2017, Landon Nitschke and Trevor Stedke delivered a memorandum to all of you addressing the ETOPS Program – specifically, in relation to the Company’s recent announcement that it intends to fly to Hawaii. In that memorandum, Landon and Trevor stated the Company’s unequivocal intention to breach our CBA as it relates to ETOPS work. The memorandum stated:
Southwest will carry out our ETOPS maintenance in our current network of Southwest hangar and line maintenance locations. We’ll employ the support of on-call Maintenance for work that needs to be accomplished outside of the contiguous 48 states.
The Company asked for this exact relief during the current prolonged Section 6 negotiations. In fact, in its June 2017 comprehensive proposal, the Company proposed the following language to be included within Article 8:
At ETOPS launch stations within the contiguous 48 states, the Company will use Southwest Technicians to perform ETOPS pre-departure checks. At ETOPS launch stations outside the contiguous 48 states, the Company may utilize on-call providers to perform ETOPS pre-departure checks.
There is simply no dispute the Company asked for relief from the existing language in our contract so that it “may” utilize on-call providers to perform ETOPS pre-departure checks outside the contiguous 48 states…
Southwest Mechanics Threaten To Throw Legal Wrench in Airline’s Proposed Hawaiian Operations
CENTENNIAL, CO – October 24, 2017 – Bret Oestreich, National Director of the Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA), announced that the union will be filing legal action that could disrupt Southwest Airlines’ plan to initiate service to Hawaii in 2018.
“Southwest Airlines has the lowest ratio of mechanics to aircraft of any major carrier,” commented Oestreich. “Now, the carrier wants to expand its service over open waters without accepting direct responsibility for the airworthiness of its aircraft. Not only is this irresponsible, but it is a direct violation of our contract, and we are not going to allow it to happen.”…
Compliance Reminder: Non-Compliance Awareness
On July 13, 2017, Southwest terminated an Aviation Maintenance Technician (AMT) for deviating from “all required procedures included in MT 735-00-01.”
The letter of termination indicates that the Company relied on surveillance tape to determine that the AMT may have allowed a second mechanic to sign for work that the AMT had performed: “security video evidences that a second AMT did not enter the area of the flight crew oxygen cylinder and therefore, required processes and/or procedures of MT 735-00-01 were not completed.”
Based on this single incident, Southwest justified the AMT’s termination in the following terms:
Southwest Airlines expects its Aircraft Maintenance Technicians to follow policies and procedures to ensure the safety of our customers and employees. Based on the aforementioned conduct, which has led to Southwest Airlines losing confidence in your judgment and ability to properly follow regulations, policy and procedures, your employment with Southwest Airlines is terminated.
Disclosures to the FAA have also led to the AMT’s receipt of a Letter of Investigation…
Video: SWAPA Supports AMFA
AMFA Supports Chairman Katko’s Recommendation to TSA to Include Aircraft Maintenance Technician (AMT) Union on ASAC
CENTENNIAL, Colo. – August 16, 2017 – The Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA) applauds Chairman John Katko’s recommendation to TSA Acting Administrator Huban Gowadia to include an AMT union on the Aviation Security Advisory Committee (ASAC).
AMFA National Director Bret Oestreich stated, “On behalf of the over 3,000 Alaska Airlines and Southwest Airlines aircraft maintenance technicians, I applaud Transportation and Protective Services Subcommittee Chairman John Katko for his leadership in recommending the Aviation Security Advisory Committee to include a ‘craft specific union to represent the AMT perspective on the Committee.’…
Overview of Pending AIR 21 Cases
In recent weeks, AMTs have initiated three separate AIR 21 cases against Southwest. Our attorney, Lee Seham, has provided a brief summary of the relevant allegations.
UPDATE – 28 July: In a memorandum entitled “Compliance Culture” dated July 7, 2017, Landon Nitschke and Trevor Stedke wrote that safety has always been the “top priority” of SWA maintenance operations. Notwithstanding this purported priority, the memorandum conceded that the FAA and Department of Labor have received an “uptick” in complaints from SWA Aircraft Maintenance Technicians (AMTs) relating to management coercion, which the federal agencies have taken “very seriously.” The memorandum admonishes and underscores, “It is never appropriate for a [Tech Ops] leader to intimidate or pressure an employee.”
Every AMT worth his salt applies pressure to himself knowing the importance of returning planes to revenue service. But, as the Compliance Culture memorandum correctly indicates, returning planes to revenue in an airworthy condition must be the top priority…
UPDATE – 21 November: A letter from the FAA to several DAL inspectors confirms that a violation of FAA rules did occur. Read the letter here.
National Director’s Letter to Membership Regarding Complaint filed by SWA
February 16, 2017
Yesterday Southwest Airlines filed a lawsuit against AMFA National, AMFA Local 11, and several individual AMFA officers and contract negotiators. The lawsuit alleges that AMFA-represented mechanics initiated an overtime boycott and that AMFA and the other defendants failed to make “every reasonable effort” to prevent the boycott and/or bring it to an end. As a remedy, SWA is seeking wide-ranging injunctive relief that would implement judicial oversight of how you perform your maintenance work.
During the pendency of the Section 6 negotiating process, both the carrier and union, and its members, are required to maintain the status quo. This obligation requires the carrier to bargain in good faith and refrain from unilaterally changing working conditions. Because SWA has not lived up to this obligation, AMFA filed a lawsuit in a federal court Arizona several weeks ago…
Letter to AMFA members from National Director
As you know, AMFA is currently engaged in collective bargaining with Southwest Airlines pursuant to the Railway Labor Act (RLA). The RLA mandates that the parties are required to refrain from “self help” until released by the National Mediation Board (“NMB”) from mediation and a thirty-day cooling off period has expired. This means that during the negotiating process Southwest is prohibited from initiating a lockout or unilaterally changing the terms of our collective bargaining agreement. Southwest is also prohibited from implementing a divide and conquer strategy based on direct negotiations with our members. Based on our determination that Southwest has violated its legal obligation in this regard, we have commenced litigation against the carrier in federal court.
Conversely, AMFA-represented employees are prohibited from engaging in concerted job actions designed to create bargaining leverage…
AMFA Files Suit Against Southwest Airlines For Declaratory & Injunctive Release
AURORA, CO – Friday, December 16, 2016 – The Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA) today filed suit in the United States District Court for the District of Arizona seeking declaratory and injunctive relief against Southwest Airlines, claiming the carrier has committed multiple violations of the Railway Labor Act during contract negotiations.
AMFA is accusing Southwest Airlines of negotiating in bad faith, misrepresenting negotiations to AMFA members, and interfering with the AMFA representatives’ efforts to represent their AMFA members. See attached for a copy of the suit filed with the United States District Court for the District of Arizona.
Southwest Airlines mechanics have been negotiating a new contract with Southwest Airlines for four years, three months and thirty days. During this time period the mechanics have not received an increase in pay despite the carrier enjoying record profits. In 2014 company profits exceeded $421 million and by 2015 the profits reached $2.4 billion.
One of the main contentions in the contract negotiations is CEO Gary Kelly’s insistence on outsourcing maintenance work to low skilled, non-certified mechanics to include foreign countries…
AMFA / SWA Lawsuit Update #3
February 7, 2017
This is the third update, which details the factual allegations contained in the complaint against Southwest Airlines that was filed with the federal court in Phoenix, Arizona.
The second update detailed Southwest’s unpreparedness to engage in meaningful negotiations. This update will provide insight into the allegations of Southwest’s regressive bargaining tactics contained in the Complaint.
Know your rights!
Our legal counsel Lee Seham has produced an instructional video about AIR21 and your rights as Aircraft Maintenance Technicians.
Reports and Updates
|AMT Contract Negotiations Update (August 18)
||November National Director’s Update
View the update from Bret Oestreich here.
|Facilities MX Contract Negotiations Update #27 (September 13)||AEI Secretary of the Americas Annual report
Read the report from Louie Key here.