Be involved with your future!
Representing members at Southwest Airlines
2404 days 13 hours 25 minutes 52 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.
There are several sources for information and updates at both the National and Local level. Read about them here.
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News, Updates and Opportunities
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JOINT MEMO: AMFA AND SWA AGREEMENT IN PRINCIPLE
After a week of mediation, including many long nights and early mornings, the Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA) and Southwest Airlines have reached an Agreement in Principle (AIP) on Saturday, March 16, 2019, toward a new collective bargaining agreement. We are very pleased with the efforts of both Teams to find common ground on a new contract that is good for our Aircraft Maintenance Technicians and for Southwest Airlines.
On Monday, we will get back together and begin the process of turning this AIP into a Tentative Agreement (TA) for you to vote on. We do not anticipate that will take too long to complete. In the meantime, here are some highlights of the Agreement…
AMFA – SWA AMT Negotiations Update #74
All previous negotiation updates can be found here.
Letter from Local 11 ALR
AMFA and the Southwest Airlines remain engaged in collective bargaining pursuant to the Railway Labor Act. The law requires that both parties refrain from “self-help” until released by the National Mediation Board from mediation and a thirty-day cooling off period has expired. During collective bargaining the Company is prohibited from initiating a lockout or unilaterally changing the terms of our collective bargaining agreement – and conversely, AMFA-represented employees are prohibited from engaging in concerted “job actions” that interfere with Company operations…
Southwest Airlines Files Suit Against AMFA
On Thursday, February, 28, 2019, Southwest Airlines filed yet another federal lawsuit against AMFA, as well as your elected negotiating representatives individually. This is but one more step in a long-standing campaign aimed at your Union and at you and the very job that you do.
This lawsuit comes on the heels of the Company’s self-styled “State of Operational Emergency” at several maintenance locations where it believes too many discrepancies were being generated and resulted in aircraft not being pushed back into service fast enough. When AMFA asked for evidence of even a single illegitimate write-up, none was produced – instead, this new lawsuit was filed. Furthermore, this “State of Operational Emergency” was instituted with wholesale disregard of many contractual provisions that provide employees with schedule flexibility and earned time off, as well as outsourcing covered work to third party vendors…
February 25 – SWAPA President Jon Weaks State of Managerial Emergency
February 23 – AMFA Legal Letter to Southwest Airlines
February 22 – Letter To AMFA Members At Southwest Airlines From National Director
SWAPA Leadership Update: This Has Been Some Kind of Spirit Week
GET THE AMFA NATIONAL APP!!!
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CBS News: Airline mechanics feel pressured to overlook potential safety problems: “Accident waiting to happen”
Aired February 4, 2019
CBS News: FAA investigators assessing mechanics’ complaints may be interpreting regulations differently, CBS News investigation finds
Aired February 5, 2019
Senators call for FAA probe after CBS News report on mechanics being pressured to ignore safety issues
Southwest Airlines faces “operational emergency” with spike in out-of-service jets
Memo Regarding LMS Issues
As you are certainly aware, the LMS training system is not working correctly. We have discussed this issue with Southwest and there has been little improvement.
We are now asking for your help to gather specific details of the problems you have encountered with the LMS training system, including times and dates, people you have notified, letters you have received, and anything else you feel may be important…
Read the entire memo here.
Press Release: AMFA and SWAPA Respond to OIG Audit of FAA Oversight of SWA
CENTENNIAL, CO – June 28, 2018 – The Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA) and the Southwest Airlines Pilots Association (SWAPA) welcome the June 20 announcement by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG) that the agency will be auditing the Federal Aviation Administration’s oversight of Southwest Airlines operations. The OIG stated, “we are concerned whether FAA’s oversight includes an assessment of the carrier’s ability to identify hazards and analyze and mitigate risks.”
Press Release: AMFA Supports Aircraft Maintenance Outsourcing Disclosure Act
The Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA) supports the recently introduced legislation by Senator Claire McCaskill (MO) and the companion legislation introduced by Representative John Garamendi (CA-03) which raises awareness for the dangerous trend of outsourcing aircraft maintenance to foreign repair stations.
AMFA Letters to Congress Regarding Safety and the Importance of our Craft’s Voice
In light of recent events, today AMFA sent the attached letters regarding safety and the importance of our craft to the leaders of the Senate Commerce Committee and House Transportation and Infrastructure Committees.
FAA: Southwest Airlines Maintenance Safety in Question… again | Southwest Airlines planes may not be safe due to corrosion
FAA conclusion on Southwest Airlines: On time over safety
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
NOTE that this lawsuit is temporarily stayed pending the results of the current AMT contract proposal.
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
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
NOTE that this lawsuit is temporarily stayed pending the results of the current AMT contract proposal.
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…
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
| February National Director’s Update
View the update from Bret Oestreich here.
|AEI Secretary of the Americas Annual report
Read the report from Louie Key here.
View the update from National Safety & Standards Director here.