Mon, Jul 30, 2012
Union Declines To Call It A Tentative Agreement
With pilots and machinists soon to vote on new company offers, the Association of Professional Flight Attendants are planning to send AMR's latest offer to its members for a ratification vote. However the union stopped short of calling it a tentative agreement and, according to the Associated Press and the Washington Post, declined to indicate if the executive committee had endorsed the offer.
American's new offer is better than the one offered last February and after filing for bankruptcy. But that was also submitted before the airline's unions signed provisional contracts with US Airways pressing for a merger. Their offer would give flight attendants pay raises of 9.9 percent over six years, signing bonuses of $1,500 each, but less profit sharing that first proposed. The offer also includes a promise to support giving the flight attendants a 3 percent stake in the company after bankruptcy. American's pilots are voting on a contract offer that would give them a 13.5 percent stake. The company's creditors are being asked to support those requests.
Flight attendant's union President Laura Glading said that the offer left a lot to be desired but she said it represents, "the absolute best terms our negotiating team was able to achieve during negotiations."
American has used bankruptcy rules to negotiate special cost-cutting deals with its unions. If any of the unions rejects the offers a U.S. bankruptcy judge could rule whether American can impose pay and working terms on its employees. Unions representing 10,000 ground workers have already ratified concessions.
Company spokesman Bruce Hicks said the proposal to flight attendants will "help build a new American that can compete and win."
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