System Board Results - October 16 & 17 2013
Seven cases were brought before the System Board Hearing in CLT on October 16th and 17th 2013
There were four terminations and three disciplinary cases.
The Board voted to overturn the termination of an agent from GNV for allegedly taking an item from a passenger and placing the item into the passenger's checked bag. The item was re-screened by TSA. This action was the trigger for termination. After examination it was discovered that the earlier disciplinary actions taken against this agent were unjustified. The agent was written up for SIDA badge violation. He used his badge to enter the security area to clean a plane after returning from training. It was found that there was no violation because his badge was active therefore there was no violation. He was also written up for marshaling a plane with the chucks positioned at the front of the stopping point of the plane. This was within days of the agent beginning his duties as a ramp agent. He was written up for not showing up to help clean a terminator. It was discovered that his assignment on that day, was to do the baggage claims for that night and to close the station. He did his task and used his remaining time to do his iLearning. In addition, the corrective was not issued until three weeks later. None of these disciplinary actions taken by the station manager was deemed justified. The agent will return to work with thirteen weeks of back pay, and be retrained as a ramp agent.
The Board voted to uphold the decision of a level three for a no-call no-show. The agent admitted that he over slept and called in late on the employee call line.
The Board voted to overturn the decision of a level three for an agent in YUM. The agent loaded the plane and recorded the check bags on the EX11. The gate agent took the EX11 to the flight crew without recording the carry-ons. It was the practice of the station for the person taking the EX11 to the flight crew to record the carry-ons on the EX11. Another agent who was aware, that the bags were not recorded on the EX11 informed the supervisor. The supervisor allowed the plane to depart without bringing the matter to the flight crew, the tower or to the station manager. The level three will be taken out of the agent's file.
The Board voted to overturn the decision of the company for giving a senior agent from CHA a level one. The agent was charged with taking a bag claim for a customer but failed to confirm which flight the customer arrived on. The charge also stated that the auto-populated function with Net Tracer pulled two segments into the claim and the agent should have deleted the extra segment from the customer's itinerary information section of the claim. After examination it was discovered that there was a malfunction in the system prohibiting the agent from carrying out his duties properly. The level one will be removed from the agent's file and he will be retrained on the said function of Net Tracer.
The Board arrived at a split decision for an Agent who was charged with being above the level of alcohol. The agent was experiencing personal difficulties at the time including homelessness. The agent confirmed that he was sleeping in his car, in the employee parking lot. On the day in question the agent reported for work at 5:00 am, and worked his shift until 7:30 am. After completing his shift he clocked out for duty. On his way to his car he stopped to talk to a fellow agent and in the course of their conversation he confessed to the agent that he was experiencing difficulties in his personal life, and it was causing him to drink more alcohol than usual. His fellow agent suggested that the Employee Assistance Program, might be available to this distressed agent. He then left the agent on the sidewalk and went back into the work area found the supervisor on duty and discussed the matter with him. The supervisor went out and spoke to the distressed agent, expressing sympathy to the agent of his similar experiences. The distressed agent began crying and was led back to the work area to avoid embarrassment. The agent was then told that he would have to take an alcohol test. He agreed believing that if he complied he would get the help that he needed. The paper work was given to him and on the way to the parking lot the supervisor told him that he was not allowed to drive himself. He assured the supervisor that he was capable of driving himself. The supervisor then told the distress agent should he leave the compound he would be terminated. The Station manager later drove the agent to the clinic to have the alcohol test. The test came back above the accepted level, and the agent was terminated.
The Board arrived at a split decision for an agent who was terminated for dependability. The agent experienced a serious injury on the job. The agent was out on FMLA during a time in 2011 to have surgery. His surgery was successful and was cleared to return to work. On returning to work the agent began experiencing discomfort in the area where the injury occurred. At times the pain and the discomfort was too unbearable for the agent to work resulting in him calling in sick. Management accommodated the agent, by allowing him to go over the limit of call-outs. The agent continued to work under the condition, hoping it would get better. The agent was told by his doctor, should he continue to work without the proper rest he could cause further damage to himself. The agent continued to work only to call out on the days that the pain was unbearable. The agent was later terminated without council about his options.
The Board arrived at a split decision for an agent who was terminated for having over the accepted level of alcohol in his system. A manager was told that the agent was smelling of alcohol. The manager questioned the agent, who then confessed that he believed that he may have a problem with alcohol and requested the help of the Employee Assistance Program. The manager never offered the help to the agent, but instead continued the process for the agent to be tested. The agent stated that he never drank alcohol on the job, and the alcohol found in his system was from the night before. The agent also revealed, at the time of the incident he was experiencing the death of a very close relative and in the process of being evicted from his home.
System Board Results - October 10 2013
Five termination cases were heard at the System Board Hearing in PHL on October 10, 2013. Four out of the five terminated agents were reinstated to their jobs.
The Board voted to overturn the termination of an agent from MDT for dependability. The Board felt that she never received proper coaching and counseling. Moreover, one of the days that counted towards her 12 occurrences was not due to her fault: her SIDA badge had been lost and she could not get a replacement until the Station Manger came back from vacation. The agent covered all the days she was out except one that counted towards her termination. The Board also took into consideration the poor record keeping the manager had done, for example, the dates on the termination write-up were inaccurate. The agent was awarded 4 weeks of back pay.
The Board voted to overturn the termination of an agent from PHL for dependability. The agent was a 17-year employee who had a second no call/no show within a 12 month rolling time frame. His previous no call/no show was soon to drop off and he no attendance problems previously in his long career with Piedmont.
The Board voted to overturn the termination of another agent from PHL for dependability. The agent was advanced very quickly on the attendance scale and the Company could have repeated a Level, instead of terminating the agent. The agent covered the days he was out – all related to illness - and advised that he would take measures to do things differently upon return to work.
The Board voted to overturn the termination of another agent from PHL for dependability. The agent was a 6-year employee with dependability issues, but no performance issues. He explained that his occurrences were all related to a life long medical condition. He had been counseled about FMLA, but was ineligible due to his P/T status. The agent had not contacted HR for any additional medical accommodation, which the Company explained was an option.
The Board voted unanimously to sustain the termination of an agent from PHL for performance. The triggering incident was a repeat Level 3 for performance. The agent missed a flight because he had not followed proper procedure – he failed to get updated paperwork - and instead took a 30 minute break because he thought he had down time. The agent could not demonstrate that he would have done anything differently or that he would follow proper procedure in the future.
System Board Results - Sept 26 2013
Five termination cases - 1 from DCA and 4 from PHL - were heard before the System Board in PHL on September 26, 2013. The Board voted to return 3 agents to work and deadlocked on the cases of 2 agents.
The Board voted unanimously to reinstate the agent from DCA who was terminated for dependability. The agent was reinstated and his discipline was reduced to a Level 3. The agent was awarded full back pay minus any unemployment compensation. The agent had been disciplined for not being in his work area. However, the agent had been waiting for his assignment in the trailer, along with several other agents, none of whom were disciplined at all. It is not uncommon for the agents to wait in the trailer pending an assignment. A witness testified on this agent's behalf. There was also evidence of this agent having been harassed by the supervisor who terminated him.
The Board unanimously voted to reinstate an agent in PHL who had been terminated for dependability. On reviewing all the agent's attendance documents, the Board realized that the numerical calculation of the agent's dependability occurrences was in error. The agent should have been placed on a Level 3, not terminated. There was also no way to verify tardiness on days the agent was supposed to have been tardy for a swap. The agent was reinstated with full back pay minus any unemployment compensation and with a return to pay status date of September 30, 2013.
The Board voted unanimously to overturn the termination of an agent in PHL who was fired for dependability. The agent had 2 previous No Call/No Shows but the 2nd was reversed because she provided documentation that she did call out within the required timeframe. For this incident, the employee's building had lost power and she had no cell service and was unable to call out in time. The agent's landlord provided a letter attesting to the power outage and the agent showed that she had taken every possible step to call out. The agent was reinstated at the last attendance Level she had been on prior to termination and was awarded 30 days of back pay.
The Board deadlocked on the case of an agent in PHL who was terminated for dependability. The precipitating incident concerned an absence on a swap, which occurred because the agent had a devastating occurrence in his personal life. The agent had not known to ask for EAP. Moreover, the agent, newly off probation, had limited experience of RosterApps and was not familiar with using it to report off. This case will be reviewed for possible arbitration.
The Board deadlocked in the case of an agent in PHL who was terminated for performance. He had an accident with a baggage tractor, causing the equipment to be taken out of service for 2 months, with a repair cost of $18,000. The agent had been given permission by another agent to use the tractor, but the agent's work assignment did not require him to use it. The agent admitted he was trying to get to his work location on time and was using the tractor to get there faster. This was the agent's 3rd performance incident, but the employee was terminated due to the severity of this incident. This case will be reviewed for possible arbitration.
System Board Results - Sept 19 2013
The termination case of a PHL agent was settled prior to the Hearing. The agent was terminated for an alleged no call/no show for calling out more than 30 minutes after the start of her shift. However, the Exception List showed that the agent had, in fact, called out in compliance with the Company's guidelines, and, moreover, the employee had called out because of an FMLA-protected health condition. The agent received full back pay, less any unemployment payments she had received, with full seniority and with a return to the shift and assignment she had prior to termination.
An agent from ALB had filed grievances after he was placed on a Level 1, then suspended, and then terminated in rapid succession. The Company maintained that the discipline was for dependability issues and the suspension, prior to termination, was to allow the Company to evaluate how his dependability would be treated. However, the Union and grievant presented evidence that the Level, suspension, and termination had more to do with his reporting unsafe and hostile conditions at the station – and that the suspension had to do with alleged insubordination. Over the preceding 6 months, the agent had been reporting his serious health and safety concerns to the Station Manager and HR about the behavior of the supervisor . The Union had statements from other agents supporting the grievant’s arguments. The Board voted unanimously to overturn the termination and reinstate the agent with full back pay, less any unemployment he had received.
System Board Results - September 12 2013
Prior to the System Board Hearing, the Union settled a grievance for 4 agents in DCA who were forced to leave before their shift ended and told by management that they would be clocked out by TMS if they didn't leave. No volunteers were solicited, seniority was disregarded, and there had been no operational changes. All 4 agents were awarded the pay they would have received if they had not been forced to leave early.
Five termination cases, all from BOS, were scheduled to be heard in Boston on September 12. The cases all involved failing to pass Safety iLearning training for Spirit Airlines after the second attempt. Agents are now given 5 attempts to pass Spirit training after these 5 agents were terminated.
Three cases were settled just prior to the start of the Hearing. These 3 agents were all reinstated 6 months from termination date to Active status on the first date that each employee was available to begin training. The agents retained full seniority including pay increases. One agent was awarded 4 weeks of back pay and the other two received 2 weeks of back pay, respectively. The Company did not want to award any back pay, maintaining that all ramp agents at BOS had to be cross trained on all the Airlines for which Piedmont was the ground handling contractor in BOS. This work represents the majority of all work done by Piedmont agents in BOS; the actual USAirways work is a small percentage of the overall work. The Company said there were no jobs for which these terminated ramp agents would have been qualified to work since they had failed the Spirit training. In BOS, the ramp agents bid a line to work that might not include Spirit, but it is standard that if the Company is short staffed for Spirit work, the Company can pull agents to fill in as needed. These 3 agents were all eager to return to work and the Union negotiated an important provision in the settlement to help them pass Spirit training: they would be provided with an interpreter, given special time during non-flight activity, given dedicated time necessary to complete the training, and be provided with assistance from a Spirit Training manager.
The Board voted unanimously to overturn the termination of the other two agents. One agent, who said he was having problems with the test program, was quizzed verbally by his manager and passed the test. However, the test program continued to show that he had not passed even after he took the test 3 more times. This agent was reinstated to full duty with 40 work days of back pay. The other agent was reinstated to full duty with 12 work days of back pay, effective on the first day the employee was available to return to work after September 16th.
Arbitration Issues Decision in Termination Case
Arbitration Issues Decision in Piedmont Termination Case
After the System Board deadlocked with a 2-to-2 vote, the Union took the termination of a PHL agent to arbitration. Arbitrator Ira Jaffe has just issued his decision in which he directed the Company to reinstate the employee who had been terminated after the employee's third No Call/No Show.
The Union argued that she had been put on a level 3 after two no-call no shows because the first two came right after another.The third No Call/No Show occurred when the employee, who had been on incidental FMLA leave, called in 37 minutes late because of extenuating circumstances related to the hospitalization of the grievant's adult son that caused a flare-up of her FMLA-covered health condition and should have been protected under FMLA. The Arbitrator ruled that the employee still should have called in on time and that her inability to do so was not related to the reason for her FMLA-covered health condition. He did believe that, given the circumstances, termination was too harsh a penalty. The Arbitrator reduced the penalty to a disciplinary suspension for the length of time the employee had been out of work (approximately 1 year) and he directed the Company to reinstate the employee, with full, uninterrupted seniority, but with no back pay and benefits.
This is the first arbitration case that has been heard under the contract. The award sets a good precedent for the way in which the Company’s Dependability Policy should be implemented. The Company’s previous position was that it had a ‘no fault’ Dependability Policy which did not take into account any extenuating circumstances in the implementation of discipline. Under this Policy, if an employee violated the Company’s Dependability Policy through 12 occurrences (absences and latenesses) or 2 incidents of No Call/No Show, the employee was terminated – no ifs, ands, or buts. In this case, the Arbitrator determined that termination is too harsh a penalty given specific, extenuating circumstances. This decision will give the Union a good opportunity to argue that termination may be too harsh a penalty in similar situations.
Policy and Procedure Handbook - Sept 2013 Revision
Report from System Board Hearing - Sept 5 2013
Five cases were heard in CLT on September 5th
Two employees had been terminated for buddy pass violations. In one case the employee admitted to receiving money for buddy passes and in the other case the employee violated the company policy on accepting and trading passes. In both cases the Board upheld the termination.
An employee had been terminated for too many dependability occurrences in a twelve month period. There were no extenuating circumstances and the company had given the employee some breaks in the past. The termination was upheld.
Employee had been terminated for a dependability issues. In this case the incident that resulted in the termination involved her leaving work early because she had received a call that her grandfather was very sick. The termination was overturned and the employee was put on the same level that she had been on before the incident.
Employee was put on a level three and given a three day suspension because he had moved the jet bridge without allegedly following the correct procedure. The policy on this was unclear and the employee was given back his three day pay and returned to the level before the suspension. The Board recommended that the policy be more definite to reflect where and when a guide person should be when moving a bridge.
Results of August 21 2013 System Board Hearing
The August 21st System Board of Adjustment hearing was held at DCA.
Six termination grievances (all from DCA) were heard. Four agents were returned to work.
The Board voted unanimously to overturn the termination of an agent who had been terminated for 3 performance incidents within a 12 month floating calendar - the last just 4 days before the end of the 12 month window. The last incident was in an area next to new construction where the lines had recently been repainted and it wasn't clear which the true lines were. These changes had been made while the agent was not at work and the agent had not been briefed on these changes upon return to work. While the agent was marshaling in a plane, one wing of the plane hit a cone; however there was no damage to the plane. The agent was awarded 45 days of back pay,
The Board voted to overturn the termination of an agent who had been terminated for performance issues. The agent was working short staffed and had been given the Ex11 for the next flight by a bus driver who had just driven up. The agent stuck it in his pocket while still working in the bin on a flight that had just landed. In his rush to start on that next flight by himself, the agent forgot where he had placed the Ex11. He eventually discovered it and gave it to the pilot, but this had resulted in a delay. The Board awarded the agent 30 days' back pay, conditional upon no further performance issues within a 60 day probationary period or the termination would be upheld.
The Board voted unanimously to overturn the termination of an agent who had been terminated for dependability issues. The precipitating event occurred when the agent swiped in before his shift to complete iLearnings, but then failed to punch in when his shift began. The agent, who has a serious health condition, was ill at the time and was trying to complete his iLearnings so that he could be eligible to swap off. His supervisor called him to tell him he had forgotten to punch in, but he was recorded as a No Call/No Show. The Board awarded the agent 45 days of back pay.
The Board voted unanimously to overturn the termination of an agent who had been terminated for dependability issues. The agent advised the company that he had developed a serious health condition and had been hospitalized. However, the company had not counseled him about Short Term Disability or FMLA, which would have protected his absences and tardinesses, all related to his serious health condition. The Board awarded the agent 30 days of back pay with a probationary period of 45 days conditional upon no further dependability occurrences.
The Board voted to uphold the termination of an agent who had been terminated for dependability issues. The agent had clearly violated the dependability policy, with no extenuating circumstances to explain his absences or tardinesses.
The Board was deadlocked with a 2 to 2 tie vote in the case of an agent who had been terminated as a result of a corporate security investigation. The company alleged the agent stole items from passengers' bags and placing items in his pockets but the agent did not appear anywhere in the company video. In addition two witnesses who had made incriminating statements came to the union and said they were forced to make their statements under penalty of being fired, and wanted to retract them. The only other written testimony was hearsay. Further, no passengers had come forward complaining they were missing any items from their luggage. This case will be reviewed for possible arbitration.
The Board deadlocked with a 2 to 2 tie vote in the case of an agent who had been terminated for performance issues. The company played a video tape that showed an accident. According to the company, the agent failed to follow proper procedure when approaching the plane in a jet loader and then hit the nose of the plane with damage that resulted in the disabling of the plane. The agent needed a translator during the hearing and it was not clear that the agent had fully understood the training directions he had received, because the agent said he thought he was following proper procedure. This case will be reviewed for possible arbitration.
System Board Hearing Results - August 15 2013
Results of System Board Hearing – August 15, 2013
· An agent at PHL was placed on a Level for an alleged violation of the Uniform policy regarding nail polish color, but the agent also admitted to being confrontational with the manager about this. The Board voted unanimously to drop the Level 1 down to an initial discussion with a clause that if the agent was confrontational with management in the future, the Level would be upheld.
· An agent at PHL was terminated for violating the Dependability Policy. The Board voted unanimously to uphold the termination after reviewing the agent's file and seeing that the agent had been given many chances to address numerous tardies due to illness, but the agent continued a pattern of tardiness. Also, the agent admitted that she had been counseled about applying for FMLA, but the agent chose not to pursue this.
· Prior to the Hearing, 2 non-disciplinary cases were settled that had been denied at Step 1 and we reached a settlement with a case that had been deadlocked at the System Board level.
o An agent at PHF was sent home early the day after working mandatory overtime, which caused the agent to lose overtime pay for the week. The agent was second in seniority in the station and no volunteers had been solicited to go home early. The company awarded the agent the overtime pay she would have earned.
o An agent at DCA was denied Day-at-a-Time Vacation because he was a Part-Time employee. The company awarded the agent his Day-at-a-Time Vacation request.
o The Board had deadlocked on a case concerning an agent at IAD who had been terminated for violating the company's Dependability Policy. The company was unwilling to reinstate him and re-train him since the station was closing next month. The company agreed to place him on furlough, affording him full furlough rights, with the opportunity of future employment with Piedmont.
System Board Results - July 18 2013
Employee at TLH was fired for a safety violation over the moving of the jet bridge. Even though he was already on a Level 3, the Board reinstated the employee because he had never received adequate training on the moving of the jetway.
Employee at CLT was fired for selling buddy passes. Though he denied his involvement at the hearing management produced a signed statement in which he had admitted his involvement. The Board upheld the termination.
Employee at ILM was fired for being involved in a physical altercation. The employee admitted he was involved but the Company had not done a thorough investigation about the incident and what prompted the altercation. The Board split 2 to 2 and the Union will be reviewing the case for arbitration.
Piedmont Loses Six Stations
he results of the RFP are in and Piedmont will be losing (6) six stations AUS, DAY, GSO, IAD, PWM, SDF. The union has been in close contact with the company during the process, and has done what we can do to avoid workers from losing their jobs. The company will provide the workers from these station with a package as well as extend the furlough benefits that is in the contract. The union disagrees with US Airways in the manner that they go about this process, and will continue to try and find ways to work with Piedmont to avoid this from happening in the further. We will continue to do all that is possible to help our members in these very difficult times. Please contact Jimmy Tarlau 301-335-6099, Abdur Bilal 917-854-2494 or Kenny Hudson 267-259-9416. for further information. Pasted below is the memo Eric Morgan sent out to Piedmont managers.
Piedmont – Customer Service Employees
As many of you are aware, eleven Piedmont Stations have for some time been under a US Airways RFP for review of competitive pricing and handling proposals. After an extended review that was lengthened by the announcement of the planned merger with American Airlines, decisions were made regarding the handling of US Airways flights in each location.
Piedmont retained the contract for handling in ALB, BTV, MHT, OMA, SYR
Piedmont lost the contract for handling in AUS, DAY, GSO, IAD, PWM, SDF
To say we are disappointed with the results of this RFP would be an understatement and we know “disappointment” does not begin to reflect the feelings of Piedmont employees in the six locations where our service will end in September. We felt our proposal and performance record was strong in all eleven locations but this is an extremely competitive business and in the six locations we lost, another competitor’s proposal offered value we could not match.
We congratulate the five stations who retained US Airways work in their location and appreciate the ongoing commitment of those employees to providing safe, efficient ground handling that demonstrates the value Piedmont Employees deliver.
As a result of this decision, Piedmont is implementing Station Closing Procedures to support employees in the six locations where our services are being terminated. Our Human Resources and Department Leadership teams will work with the stations to clarify the benefits and options available to each employee who is willing to assist Piedmont in completing our work assignment for US Airways in their location. For those employees who can be geographically flexible, it would be Piedmont’s privilege to arrange a transfer to another location where their talents are needed to support our business. For those whose personal or family situation does not allow them to transfer, our retention and furlough package is designed to reward their support during this transition period and to help position them to pursue other employment options.
This is difficult news but it is important to remember the landscape in the Regional Ground Handling Business changes quickly. While we are disappointed with the results of this RFP, for the sake of Piedmont employees across our system and our collective job security, we need to stay focused on Safety Compliance, good Performance and maintaining competitive Costs. If we do that, we will be in the consideration set when new opportunities present themselves.
With respect and appreciation for all you do for Piedmont,
Eric Morgan – VP Customer Service
Summary of System Board Decisions - June 30 2013
System Board Hearings – 14 Sets of Hearings
(As of June 30, 2013)
71 Cases Heard by the Board
4 Did Not Show Up at Hearing (Sustained)
7 Referred to Arbitration (2-2 Vote at System Board)
1 – Settled (Employee Got Job Back with No Back Pay)
1 – Scheduled for arbitration on July 11
5 – Being reviewed for arbitration
17 Corrective Actions
14 Non Disciplinary Cases
3 Referred to Arbitration (currently being reviewed by Legal staff)
58 Cases Currently Scheduled for System Board through October
10 Non Disciplinary
System Board Hearing Results - June 20 and 27 2013
System Board Hearings were Held on June 20th and June 27th.
Ten grievances were heard by the Board.
Two terminations were upheld. Five corrective actions were reduced or thrown out.
There were three non-disciplinary grievances: two were denied and one was upheld.
· An agent at PHL had her Level 1 thrown out. She had been given a corrective action for not wearing a seat belt. The agent said she was wearing it and it was shown that there was no way the supervisor could have seen whether she was or was not wearing the seat belt.
· The same agent felt that she was being harassed by a manager. The Board determined that the manager in question take sensitivity training.
· Another agent PHL had her Level 1 thrown out. She had been given a Level 1 for ‘disrespectful behavior’ to a supervisor but it was shown that both sides were at fault and the manager and the agent were asked to have coaching and counseling.
· Two agents at ERI had their Level 3 reduced to a Level 2. The discipline was a result of de-icing a plane with both engines running. It was reduced because it was the first offense, because management had waited a week before approaching the employees about the action and another manager had taken similar action.
· The Board upheld a Level 1 for an agent at ERI who admitted not followed the correct procedure for issuing boarding passes.
· An employee at PHF had his Level 2 reduced to a Level 1. He had missed an inbound plane but in fact he had been talking to the manager at the time.
· Two other non-disciplinary grievances from PHF were found to be not grievable. One had to do with employees required to mop up floors on their down town and the other on whether all corrective action should be on separate tracks. While dependability and performance are on separate tracks. All performance related corrective actions are on the same track.
Report from System Board Hearing - June 6 2013
· An agent at CLT was terminated for allegedly violating security rules when attempting to secure travel from CLT to LGA. The agent first entered through the employee entrance. She testified that her intention was to go back through security but had been stopped before she had the chance to do so. The termination was overturned with 30 days back pay.
· Agents at CLT who had transferred to cars before the Contract was signed were grieving their loss of pay when agents now do not lose pay when transferring to cars. The Board saw the unfairness of this and ruled that the company and union meet to address the unfairness of the situation through a monetary solution.
· A long time agent at AGS failed a gate test for a second time and had tried to transfer to CLT where she could stay on the ramp but was not allowed to transfer and was terminated. The Board split 2 to 2 and the union will review the case for possible arbitration.
· Agent at DAB was terminated for violating buddy pass rules. It was clear that the agent had indeed violated the rules and more than once. The termination was upheld.
New Dependability Policy Implementation Postponed
Piedmont management has decided to delay the implementation of the new Dependability Policy which was slated to begin on July 1st. The Company will meet with the Union to discuss our concerns with the new policy. We will update everyone when there is something new to report.
System Board Hearing Results - May 22 and May 30 2013
· Three disciplines were overturned.
o Agent at PHL was written up for being away from the gate even though a manager told her to step in her office and discuss an issue. The corrective action was removed.
o An agent at PHL had her termination overturned and was awarded 21 days back pay. She had been terminated for a no call no show on a posted overtime shift where she had not received notice that she was supposed to work the shift
o An agent at PHL had her case settled and her Level II removed. She was on vacation when the Holiday schedule changed. She came to work at her regular time and was giving a Level II for a no call no show because she didn't know about the changed starting time.
· Four grievances resulted in two to two tie votes and the cases will be reviewed for arbitration
o One agent at PHL was just 34 minute late on a second No call no Show
o An agent at PHL was terminated for a no call no show even though he called but was unable to reach management because the cell towers were all down.
o An agent at IAD was terminated for a no call no show even though he was at the station that day (taking a flight) and management saw him and could have reached out to him and reminded him of the swap.
o An agent at DCA was terminated for violating the dependability policy even though she had medical documentation for why she was out sick.
· Three terminations were upheld
o Two people did not come or call in to the System Board and missed the hearing.
o One agent at PHL was terminated for her second no call no show. There was plenty of documentation that she did not try to get to work and had not called in.
System Board Hearing Results - April 17 2013
Results of System Board Hearing for April 17th 2013
1. The Union filed a grievance against the company policy of only paying straight time when rounding off the half hour for employees who worked more than 40 hours. In CRW a worker worked 24 minutes and was paid at time and half for the 24 minutes but only at straight time for the final six minutes. It was discovered that this was the official company policy. The Board ruled that employees who work more than 40 hours in a week should be paid premium time for the whole half hour (worked time and non-worked time).
2. Workers at CLT who were capped out and believed they should have gotten the 25 cent increase of the cap on Jan 1 and not had to wait until their anniversary date. The Board decided that the language in the contract clearly stated that employees would get their raises on their anniversary dates not on January 1st.
3. An employee at CLT went from a supervisory position to an agent position. She was told that she would retain her supervisor salary. The company later rescinded and gave her less than they agreed to. Unfortunately this all happened in 2011 before the contract was in effect and the Board ruled that though the grievance might have merit nothing could be done because it was pre-contract.
4. Full time employees at EYW filed a grievance when they were switched from full time status to part time status and lost their benefits. They felt that there was not a significant reduction of flights to necessitate the switch. The Board was tied two to two and this case is pending a legal review before it is scheduled for arbitration.
5. Full time employee at DAY was switched from operations to ramp duty and bids were set up to have part time employees do the operations work even though the full time employee had more seniority. The Board split two to two on this case and it is pending a legal review before it is scheduled for arbitration.
6. Employee at PHF with 16 years seniority was being forced to go to GSC training and threatened with termination if he failed the training a second time. The Board ruled that the Station Manger could decide that agents had to go to GSC training but if the employee failed he should go back to his previous position as is stated in Article 9 – Section C and not threatened with termination.
Report from System Board Hearing - April 18 2013
1. Employee in PHX was terminated because a pilot alleged that the agent was rude. There was no proof of this and the termination was overturned and the employee received 45 days back pay.
2. Employee at DCA was a TSA agent and was terminated for no call no show. She did not show up for work after being told by TSA do not use her TSA badge to work for Piedmont. It was shown that she had never been badged for Piedmont. The termination was overturned and the employee received 35 days back pay..
3. Employee at CAK was terminated for incorrectly waiving a bag fee. It was shown at the hearing that the employee was terminated after consulting her supervisor did not receive all of the information for bag fee. The termination was over turned.
4. Employee at DCA was fired for using foul language. It was determined that the language was used in a phone conversation with grievant’s sister and the person making the complained was a friend of the grievant. The termination was over turned and employee received 30 days back pay
5. Employee at CAK was given a Level 1 for not charging a heavy bag fee during a very busy time of the day. The Board upheld the Level 1 corrective action in this case.
In accordance with the collective bargaining agreement (Article 24 – Section Z), the Company and the Union have been meeting over the last 6 months to work out a new dependability policy that includes a “grace period” and a “system that recognizes different degrees of tardiness”.
There are some improved parts of the policy and some items that are a step back.
Positive aspects of program:
· For the first 4 minor tardies (10 minutes or less) you will only receive a ½ occurrence
Negative aspects of new policy:
· Eleven dependability occurrences result in termination (down from 12)
Piedmont Stewards Meet With Eric Morgan
On Friday March 29th over 100 stewards from 40 stations met at the PHL Airport Marriott Hotel. The stewards heard a presentation from Eric Morgan on the Piedmont business plan for the coming year and a talk by Michelle Foose describing the presentation she makes to Piedmont managers on how to respect the contract. The Chief of Staff from CWA, Ron Collins, who is in charge of the airline passenger group at CWA also spoke as did Abdur Bilal and Kenny Hudson, the two Local Presidents, and myself. Each Local union then had its own separte Local meeting with its stewards. It was good seeing all the stewards in one place..
cwafiles.org/PiedmontAgent/Piedmont_Station_Pay_Scales_2013-2016.pdf for 2013 through 2016
System Board Hearing Results - March 21 2013
There were seven (7) cases scheduled for the System Board.
· An agent from DCA had been terminated for alleging not closing the panel on the door. When the video was reviewed it was determined that the evidence was inconclusive and his termination was over turned and he was awarded one month’s back pay.
· An agent from PHX had been terminated for sexual harassment. There were numerous statements from fellow workers collaborating the charges and his termination was upheld.
· An agent from PHL was given a Level 3 for reporting back late from lunch. She produced evidence that she was indeed working at the time and the corrective action was over turned.
· Two employees (one from DCA and one from PHL) were terminated for dependability issues. In one case it was clear to the Board that the employee was not really making an attempt to keep his job and the termination was upheld. In the other case the person had substantial documentation with medical documentation that the person was legitimately out for medical reasons. The Board split 2
Change In Travel Policy and Shift Swap Suspensions
Memo sent to station managers regarding change in policy on travel time and shift swap suspensions
Subject: Important Policy Changes which are Effective Immediately
Two Important changes to the Customer Service Policy which are to go into effect immediately:
Report from System Board Hearing - Feb 21 2013
7 cases – 4 disciplines over turned and 3 upheld
1) There were three terminations at CLT that involved the alleged selling of buddy passes. There was no evidence on two of the cases and the terminations were over turned. There was some evidence on the third case and that termination was upheld.
2) A termination at OAJ was overturned when the Board decided that an employee who was fired for taking money for baggage fees, was incorrectly inputting baggage waiver fee information and should have been adequately trained, the mistakes were not his fault.
3) The termination of two other employees was upheld. One at PHL had clearly violated the company dependability policy and the other employee at SYR had repeatedly not performed the duties of his job.
4) An employee at MHT involved in an altercation had his discipline reduced from Level III to Level II because his discipline had been harsher than the others involved.
Questions and Answers about the AA-USAirways Merger’s Impact on Piedmont Agents
1. Will Piedmont be merged with American Eagle
a. The merger won't necessarily mean that American Eagle (their regional carrier) and Piedmont will merge. The new combined AA-USAirways may decide to continue to have two subsidiaries. (USAirways currently has more than one subsidiary) If they decide to merge American Eagle and Piedmont it will probably be a couple of years away.
a. American Eagle is currently represented by a union (TWU) so there definitely will be a union for the combined group. The two unions will probably work out a way for joint representation. There will be negotiations over combined seniority and combining the union contracts but until those negotiations are complete the current contract, benefits and seniority will stay in place
a. I can't imagine that it would be practical for them to replace the 5500 people who work for Piedmont with another company. Why would they do that? Piedmont delivers a quality service at (unfortunately) very little cost.
b. It's just as likely (especially if USAirways management gets control as looks to be likely ) that Piedmont will expand to a lot of other stations. Unfortunately we're facing the issue of Piedmont losing work all the time whether it is USAirways or a combined carrier. Even now USAirways is reveiwing proposals from other companies for the work at 10 stations to see if they want to switch from Piedmont to another company. Unfortuantely USAirways sees Piedmont (its own subsidary!!) as just another sub-contractor for its work. The regional airline business is a cut throat operation. It is hard for us to make sure that we keep wages and benefits at as high a level as possible but yet make sure that Piedmont is competitive enough to keep the work and not have another carrier get the work.
System Board Hearing - Jan 28
2) Second case was an appeal of a termination from PHL who was on a Level III. The company bus was in an accident and the employee was late as a result. The employee was terminated as a result of the tardy. The Board split two to two and the case will be processed for arbitration.
System Board Results - January 17 2013
System Board Results - 4 cases:
1) Employee from FLO who had been terminated because he was alleged to have stolen a lap top was given his job back when the Board determined that he had just placed it aside and had no intent of stealing it;
2) 2&3) An employee in PHX was given a Step 1 and a Level 3 (with loss of pay) The Level 1 was the result of an incident ‘which might have caused damage’. The Level 1 was maintained because of the seriousness of possible aircraft damage. The Level 3 was a result of an FAA investigation in which required information was not at the agent’s podium. It was determined that it was not the agent’s responsibility to have the information at her podium and the Level 3 was removed and she was awarded back pay.
3) 4) An employee at DCA had been removed from the station’s ‘flex program’ last year because of missing an iLearning segment. It’s a year later and he wanted to get back in the program. The Board said he could get back in the program the next time there was an opening in the flex program.
Local 13345 Officers At Swearing In Ceremony
Local 13345 Officers:
Kenny Hudson, President
Mike Tillery, Vice-President
Ahsaki Lockett , Secretary Treasurer
Keith Richardson, Area Representative
Steve Morgan, Area Representative
Michael Corrigan, Area Representative
Adnrew Hackman, At Large Representative
Carol Taylor, At Large Representative
Kevin Taylor, At Large Representative
Charles Coleman, At Large Representative (not in picture)
Election Results for CWA Local 13345
Election Results for CWA Local 13345
CWA Local 3645 Election Results
Election Results for Local 3645
At-Large Representative (top 4 were elected)
Local 3645 Elected officers
Full Tentative Agreement
CWA Members get over 40 members-only discounts and services including discounts at AT&T Wireless (15%), Credit Counseling, discounts at 50 theme parks, free legal advice and a union credit card. Check out the complete list of benefits for CWA members. Now is the time to join. Fill out a card, give it to a steward or send it to CWA, 17000 Science Drive, Bowie, MD 20715.
Summary of Tentative Agreement
a. 2012: 6-8% Lump Sum Payments – Effective within 30 days of the ratification of the contract
b. 2013-2016: Guaranteed 4% raise for all employees plus up to 2% lump sum payments based on hours worked in previous year: 1% based on completion of iLearning [80% of agents complete this] and 1% based on dependability
c. Longevity pay: starting in 2014 - $500 each year for employees with 5 years of service who achieve a 6% evaluation
d. People who are currently at the maximum:
2. Part-time Employees
a. Time and a half pay for part time employees when the shift is extended beyond 2 hours (even if you haven’t worked 40 hours)
5. Grievance procedure – all discipline and other concerns can be appealed.
6. Binding arbitration
a. All discipline can be appealed to a neutral arbitrator (no more Fair Treatment Board
7. Protection in case of a merger or takeover
a. Successorship language: union is recognized until companies are successfully merged;
a. Commitment to unlimited swaps
9. Personal Leave:
a. 2nd Personal Day for full time employees with two years’ service
a. 3rd week of vacation after 7 years (down from 8 years)
11. Bereavement Leave: Added legal guardian, ward, and domestic partner.
12. Seniority: Will govern in cases of bidding work schedules, vacation preference, furlough and recall
13. Furlough and recall – In cases of a station shut-down, an employee with 2 years of service may bump a junior employee at any station.
14. Parental Day: An employee will get one day of paid leave for the birth or adoption of a child.
b. Removal of ‘failure to follow procedures’ from Corrective Action Form
c. Employees whose flight benefits or swap privileges are suspended as a result of failing required training will have them restored on completion of training.
d. Company will administer dependability and other disciplinary matters on different tracks.
e. Disciplinary letters will become inactive after 12 months.
16. Health Insurance for full-time employees
a. Increases limited to 1% a year and those increases start in 2015
17. Break Period and Lunch:
a. Employees will be guaranteed a break if there is no down time during a shift.
18. Safety and health: Employees will not be required to work in unsafe or unsanitary areas or under unsafe or unsanitary conditions
19. Sick leave:
a. Employees can use leave by the hour if they have to go home early
20. Alcohol and drug policy: Company cannot make changes in current policy without negotiating with the union
21. Unpaid Medical Leave: Employee will accrue longevity for purposes of pay and benefits for 90 days.
22. Probationary Period: Reduced from 180 to 90 days with the ability of Company to extend for another 90 days
23. Jury Duty/Court Appearance: Employees who are required to appear in court for non-work issues may ask for leave without pay and it will not be unreasonably denied.
24. Non discrimination clause: Company can’t discriminate
25. Employees who are sick the day before or after a holiday you get paid if they bring in a doctor’s note
26. Severe weather situation: An employee may use a vacation or personal day in a severe weather situation and will not receive an occurrence
a. Union will be given 1 hour to address new hires during scheduled orientation sessions.
30. Union shop at all stations.
31. Duration: form date of ratification until 12/31/16.
a. Early negotiations start 6/30/16
Click on the subject line to find a steward at your station
Family & Medical Leave Fact Sheet
[for more information - click the title]
New Piedmont Agent Facebook Group
We now have a facebook group just for Piedmont Agents. You can comment about what is going on at your station and how negotiations are going by joining the new facebook group.:
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