Council Newsletter, Feb. 2024

AFA Horizon – Council 16 Newsletter (BOI, PAE, SEA, GEG)

In case you missed it, check out the last newsletter

Black History Month
AFA is proud to celebrate Black History Month in February, an annual national observance that highlights the power and impact of the Black community.

Black History Month is a dedicated time to honor and celebrate the contributions of Black Americans throughout history and the present with emphasis on achievements that have been impactful domestically and abroad. It is an opportunity to engage in stories that provide historical context and highlight accomplishments that are often overlooked and not discussed in the standard history books.

Black History Month AFA pin are available in bases. Diversity and Inclusion pins are a concept put forward by AFA members through the AFA structure.

Read AFA Human Rights & Equity Committee’s newsletter on Black History Month >

Boise base visit
LEC Officers are coming to BOISE. Please join us on THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 22 at 13:00 at the Applebees Bar & Grill next to Boise airport – 2810 W Elder St, Boise, ID 83705. We look forward to seeing you there and hearing what is important to you in our continued representation to Members of Council 16. This event will end around 15:00.

Council meeting, February 15

In advance of the MEC meeting, scheduled for February 19, there will be a Local Council meeting to review and discuss the agenda of the MEC meeting.
Please join us on February 15, 2024 at 15:30 via Google Meet.
Join by phone – 1 (601) 851-1147‬ PIN: ‪718 665 300‬#.

Please see the advance agenda for this council meeting.

Vacancy bids
Per the CBA, management has opened a vacancy bid for Apr24. This is to make sure current Flight Attendants have the opportunity to transfer before they determine where the new hire class will be domiciled. They are looking to add 10 Flight Attendants in the BOI, and 11 in the SEA.

If you are interested, please fill out the Vacancy Domicile Transfer Request form in Comply365.  Refer to management’s email for more information.

Vacancy bidding is opened on February 5th and closes on February 7th at 17:00 Pacific time.

Base pay comparison – QX Flight Attendants vs. WA./Seattle minimum wages
Now is our time to bridge the gap and receive a fair pay scale for the job we do as Flight Attendants taking into consideration what it takes each of us to get hired, pass initial ground school, responsibilities for safety and life, and more. Horizon Flight Attendants need a pay scale that compensates fairly for the responsibilities of our job. Additionally, per diem and monthly/yearly bonuses are not intended for paying for everyday living expenses. Below is a table showing the approximate yearly base gross earnings of Horizon Flight Attendants working 75 credits per month.

On January 1, 2024, the minimum wage in Washington was raised to $16.28 per hour (approx. gross earning $33,862/year). The minimum wage was also raised in Seattle to $19.97 per hour (approx. gross earning $41,537/year). Each year, Washington State L&I is required to make a cost-of-living adjustment to the minimum wage based on the CPI-W. Initiative 688, approved by Washington voters in 1998, supported increasing the minimum wage from $4.90 to $6.50 and annually adjusting for inflation thereafter. Initiative 1433, approved by Washington voters in 2016, supported incrementally raising the state’s minimum wage from $9.47 to $13.50 by 2020 and mandating employers to offer paid sick leave.

Representation in Washington DC
On December 6, 2023, the NTSB Chair Jennifer Homendy hosted “Navigating Mental Health in Aviation,”. ​​The summit brought together safety experts from the aviation industry, academia, the mental health profession, and government to examine the unintended consequences of the current system for evaluating mental fitness in the aviation workforce, identify how they can better support those in the aviation industry, and ultimately make aviation safer for all.

Stephanie Day, PAE Flight Attendant, had the privilege of being invited to speak during this summit. Click to watch the full hearing.

Negotiations Session 3
Your AFA Negotiations Committee met with management for Negotiation Session 3 on Jan. 3-5. Representing you at the table were Committee Members- Heather Coleman & Lexie Massey, MEC President- Lisa Davis Warren, and AFA Staff Attorney & Negotiator- Kimberley Chaput.

The Committee met with Vice President Station Ops & Inflight- Shelly Parker, Director Finance- Amber Hopkins, Manager Inflight Labor & Performance- William Casalins Altimar, Senior Corporate Counsel, Alaska Legal- Latrice Lee, and Seyfarth Shaw LLP Partner, Labor & Employment- Molly Gabel.

During this session, the parties discussed proposals on: 

  • Article 4: Duty-Time Expenses – Agreed to incorporate the sideletter requiring single-occupancy day rooms, but other than that, there was not much common ground. Management wants to increase the minimum time to get a day room from four to six hours (but could not explain why, other that “it takes so long to get to and from the day room”); keep our per diem where it is for the duration of the new agreement; and increase the time we must wait for a shuttle at the airport from 25 to 30 minutes. The Committee rejected all these proposals. We did not propose a specific number for per diem since we do not know what the overall compensation package will be, but of course you need an increase! The Committee made proposals to allow a Flight Attendant to decline a dayroom or overnight hotel and receive payment; a requirement that a TDY hotel have a kitchen or kitchenette in the room; procedures to secure a hotel room if the scheduled hotel does not have a room ready; and to require transportation (or taxi/ride share) to restaurants, even if they are close by, if the walk feels unsafe.
  • Article 9: Sick Leave – The Committee proposed to increase accruals, bring Horizon into compliance with state sick leave laws, and replace our attendance policy with Alaska’s policy. Management will respond at the next session.
  • Article 25: General – Management wants to keep the Commuter Policy the same as it currently is, except for an agreement to incorporate the current sideletter for operating on other airlines. The Committee proposed a new ground commuter policy for all flight attendants; W-5 boarding priority for all registered commuters; and a hotel allowance for flight attendants who live at least 50 miles from their domicile. Management also wants to increase our tidying duties to include crossing seatbelts. The Committee is not interested in that; you work hard enough already. When Horizon got e175s, management promised that there would be groomers at the stations where the e175 flew. Management’s decision to go to an all-jet fleet means they need to find more groomers, not that we need to groom more. Enough said!
  • Article 26: Safety, Health, and Security – Management agreed to increase the frequency of Fatigue Review Board meetings and to cover flight pay loss and training for attendance at these and other safety meetings. They agreed to the Committee’s proposal to add “active shooter” to the situations when a Flight Attendant can be removed from a trip with pay protection. We are still working on refining the language on what constitutes a “lifesaving medical emergency.”. We were not able to reach agreement, so we placed this Article in a “parking lot” to come back to in the future.
  • Sideletter 7: Hotel Minimum Standards – As in Article 4, management wants a 30-minute wait for transportation. The Committee rejected that and proposed a $50 payment if a Flight Attendant must stay in a hotel other than the primary or backup hotel. 

In short, it was a productive if somewhat frustrating session. The next session will be even more challenging; management will be making its initial proposal on the true “guts” of our contract: Article 5 (Hours of Service), Article 6 (Crew Scheduling) and Article 7 (Reserve). This is probably the fastest negotiations have ever moved, and the Committee appreciates that management is not wasting time. This is where things start getting tougher.

Remember that we are fighting in solidarity with our fellow flight attendants at other carriers. Flight Attendants from AFA (Alaska and United), APFA (American) and TWU (Southwest) will be picketing nationwide on February 13. We encourage everyone to come out and help—their fight is our fight!

The next session will be February 5-7, 2024.

Council status report

If you have an unresolved outstanding balance pay online.  Flight Attendants who have taken any unpaid leaves, including CLOA, union dues must be paid manually. If you happen to find yourself in an arrears situation and do not know the amount owing or have any questions regarding what months you owe, please contact Council leadership.  We are here to help!

Know your contract

  • Article 23.A.2 – “A Flight Attendant is entitled to have an Association representative who is a Company employee represent her/him at any meeting concerning discipline or the possibility of discipline, or to take part in the conference call if that is how the meeting is conducted. If a meeting is requested, the Flight Attendant may choose between:
    • (1) meeting in person during non-working time;
    • (2) a conference telephone call; or
    • (3) dropping a Trip, or portion thereof when approved by the Managing Director of Inflight (and the associated pay for it), and meet during her/his scheduled Trip time.
  • Article 23.A.3 – “A probationary Flight Attendant may not grieve a disciplinary or discharge action against her/him.” (Note: Probationary Flight Attendants are entitled to Association representation during any meeting concerning discipline or the possibility of discipline.)

Until the next check-in, fly safe!

“Stronger Together, Better Together”