Rich Delaney United Airlines Update 1/30/13

http://www.iam141.org/rich/index.html

Rich Delaney, January 30, 2012­—The slow pace of negotiations continued this past week, with little meaningful or positive movement on the key issues we have mentioned in previous updates. The essential component of job security is still under discussion and has made it difficult to move to other important issues until it is more defined.
A significant issue that is connected with overall job security is seniority integration. The fair combining of the several seniority lists is critical to finalizing the full integration of our membership. It is the issue that impacts every member and their futures. Since it is a subject that will be resolved only once and will not be a topic of negotiations in the future, unless an additional merger is entered into by United, it is important that the integration be done as fairly and equitably as possible, following the applicable laws and internal policies of our Union. In order to most fully assure all members that this process will be conducted in an unbiased but legally correct manner we have entered into an agreement with the company outlining the process to be followed.
Using the existing contracts language, the current law governing airline seniority integration, and the long standing policy of the IAM, we have agreed to a process that expedites the process while maintaining the requirements of the above mentioned criteria.
We have agreed to a timeline that calls for an integrated seniority list for all IAM classifications no later than April 15, 2013. In order to reach that requirement we have agreed to have the issues related to seniority integration be determined by a neutral arbitrator. The use of an arbitrator to resolve integration issues is anticipated by the law covering seniority, known as the McCaskill-Bond Amendment, and both parties have agreed to enter this phase of the process without delay.
The arbitrator we have selected is Joshua Javits. Mr. Javits is an extremely well known and respected neutral with a strong background in dealing with these types of hearings. Mr. Javits is not currently an arbitrator that hears other United/IAM cases, and in fact has not heard previous cases under our Grievance Procedure. Mr. Javits is the former Chairman of the National Mediation Board.
As a Union, we have hired an outside law firm to manage the hearing on behalf of the IAM and its members. The firm of Gurerrieri, Clayman, Bartos & Parcelli have agreed to work with our members and present their positions to Mr. Javits. Again, this firm has an established history in representing unions and union members in these types of hearings. We have not engaged this firm in other cases.
Representatives of the IAM will be appointed to present the many positions our members have identified as critical to establishing a fair and equitable combined seniority list. In addition, the process calls for a period of time, after Mr. Javits makes his initial ruling, in which individual members can protest their position on the list and Mr. Javits will rule on the individual facts.
Connected with this agreement, and consistent with previous agreements we have reached with United related to other classifications currently not covered by an Agreement, we have reached an agreement with United that provides that the equivalent payment of Profit Sharing will be made to current Continental employees who have not yet been brought into our contracts. This agreement covers the current s-CO Material Specialists, Maintenance Instructors, and Public Contact employees. It has been our intention to insure that all IAM members who have contributed to the success of the airline share in that success. Our first goal was to complete formal contract negotiations that included these payments into our agreement. This recent agreement protects the required payment in the event our negotiations are not finished in time for the planned scheduled payment.
In regard to this year’s announced Profit Sharing, the IAM will again review the company’s calculation to insure, as far as documentable information can show, the payment is accurate and in accordance with our Agreements. The review of last year’s payment by our financial advisor has been incomplete to this date due to the failure of the company providing needed information regarding what is defined as “considered earnings” by our members for the year 2011. We will continue to press for this information in order to determine if either or both year’s Profit Sharing payments are correct.

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