IAM CALLS ON REPUBLIC AIRWAYS MANAGEMENT TO RESTORE MECHANICS 40 HOUR WORK WEEK
The IAM today calls on Republic Airways management to do the right thing and restore AMTs’ 40 hour work week. Republic management accepted nearly $206 million of federal aid in May. Even though the terms and conditions of the CARES Act explicitly mandated that airline workers’ employment, pay and benefits not be cut, Republic management exploited a loophole and cut AMT hours. Any way you slice it, this amounted to a pay and benefit cut (401k programs are tied to earnings).
The IAM fought against these hours cuts on Capitol Hill and in federal court, and airlines in which IAM members are employed all backed down from any plans to cut employee hours. Republic management, however, received funds based on employee earnings from 4/1/19 to 9/30/19 and then cut AMT’s pay. This was and remains a dirty deal at the expense of Republic AMTs and other Republic workers.
The IAM informed key elected officials months ago regarding what we believe was a perversion of the intent of the CARES Act. The IAM is leading the push for an extension of the Payroll Support Program (PSP) component of the CARES Act to March 31, 2021. The PSP will be part of any pandemic relief legislation and the IAM, as well as other airline unions, are pressing Congress to act before next Thursday. Negotiations are heating up again and the PSP is a real possibility to be re-upped.
The IAM will keep fighting for what’s right and Republic Airways management needs to get in compliance and restore AMT’s 40 hour work week.
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UNIONIZED REPUBLIC PILOTS VOTE TO PREVENT LAYOFFS
Republic Airways pilots, represented by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT), voted last week to prevent any potential layoffs at the carrier. Pilots overwhelmingly approved the deal by a vote of 1,841-171, or 92 percent.
While Republic supervisors are on the floor claiming that management respects our to unionize, they are purposely trying to delay and derail our union vote by illegitimately inflating the voter eligibility list and claiming contract negotiations could last years and years. They claim that because we are not unionized, they can take a “streamlined” approach to our group. All this is meant to influence us and dissuade us from unionizing.
Seems like the unionized pilots deal was pretty “streamlined.”
The fact is, BECAUSE the pilots are unionized they had the opportunity to negotiate an agreement, approved by 92 percent, very quickly that will keep all pilots working and receiving their pay and benefits. BECAUSE we are not unionized, we are not given the same opportunity to negotiate with management to avoid layoffs. BECAUSE we are not unionized, sadly, we are not offered the same respect that we deserve.
Republic management right now has us where they want us: Without power to make a difference in our professional lives that would benefit our families. They want us to believe that having no voice in our collective future is the way to go, and that we should just trust them to ensure that they have the best interests of our families in mind. Why would we trust them with that?
The reality is, when we form a union and gain IAM representation we will have the ability and opportunity to advance our careers and our profession and make sure our well-being and that of our families are respected.
We deserve nothing less.
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IAM COMPLETING VOTER ELIGIBILITY CHALLENGES, PRESSING FOR EXTENSTION OF PAYROLL SUPPORT PROGRAM
As previously reported, Republic Airways management purposely included management officials on its voter eligibility list to the National Mediation Board (NMB) to slow the representation election process down and interfere with our right to form a union. The IAM is in the final stages of preparing legal challenges to the inclusion of supervisors, and other workers who do not belong in the mechanic and related classification, and we will report to you when those challenges are submitted to the NMB.
Republic management’s strategy is simple: They believe that those dedicated workers who management will layoff on October 1st will no longer be interested in joining a union and they hope to include management workers to tilt the scales in their favor. But their plan is flawed.
When we vote in the IAM, one of the many things that we will focus on is legally enforceable recall rights that would apply to AMTs who are laid off on October 1st and beyond. The fact that Republic management has not provided AMTs who have received layoff notices the legal right to return to their jobs when the airline industry recovers is deplorable. The fact that AMTs cannot maintain their employment in other locations on Republic’s system based on their seniority is equally deplorable and demonstrates that Republic management has absolutely zero respect for AMTs and our families. This can and will be immediately addressed once we form our union with the IAM and the IAM is legally certified to represent us, which would be the day we win the vote. It’s clear why Republic management and its high-priced law firm, Ford and Harrison, seek this delay.
In other news, IAM members fanned out across the country to press elected officials to extend the Payroll Support Program (PSP). If we are successful in extending the PSP, and Republic management takes additional federal aid, layoff would be prohibited.
Please click here to read more about the IAM’s push to extend the PSP.
REPUBLIC MANAGEMENT AND FORD AND HARRISON SLOWS DOWN VOTING PROCESS
Republic management, in consultation with its high-priced anti-worker law firm Ford and Harrison, has slowed down the voting process by inflating the voter eligibility list by including workers who they know are not part of the mechanic and related classification.
IAM attorneys will fight this blatant disregard for Republic AMT’s right to form a union and have notified the National Mediation Board (NMB) that the IAM will oppose the inclusion of workers on the voter eligibility list that do not belong. However, this will take time and will slow the process down.
The largest group of employees included in the voter eligibility list are supervisors. It is important to realize, as outlined in the NMB’s Representation Manual, that employees with the authority to supervise, to recommend discipline/discharge, the authority to grant overtime and the like are not eligible to vote in union representation elections. Republic management also included other smaller groups, such as employees who we believe do not belong.
The reason why Republic management has knowingly included workers on the voter eligibility list is to slow down or derail the process. They fully know and are scared that Republic AMTs, given the right to vote, will choose to form a union with the IAM and they DO NOT want that. They will do everything in their power to stop us from exercising our right to vote and form a union.
Republic management says that they respect our right to form a union and decide the matter democratically for ourselves. But Republic management’s actions, guided by lawyers they are paying a lot of money to, say the exact opposite.
We will report to Republic AMTs when IAM’s objections are submitted to the NMB and advise of next steps.
THE BENEFITS OF IAM MEMBERSHIP: FREE COLLEGE
IAM membership will not only provide us the right to negotiate and vote on an employment contract, and provide us legal protection from unjust discipline and termination, it will also provide us with many other benefits, like Free College for us and our eligible family members.
CLICK HERE TO CHECK OUT THE IAM’S FREE COLLEGE PROGRAM.
REPUBLIC MANAGEMENT AND ITS HIGH-PRICED ANTI-WORKER LAW FIRM FORD AND HARRISON CONTINUE TO SPREAD FALSE INFORMATION
In a recent email to employees, Republic management—no doubt directed by Ford and Harrison—states that if Republic mechanic and related employees vote in the IAM then Republic management cannot legally increase wages or benefits during the “life of the contract” or outside negotiations. This is a lie.
The IAM has entered into countless agreements with airlines to INCREASE wages and benefits and improve the working conditions of IAM members during the life of contracts. For example, American Airlines mechanic and related employees received a 25 percent wage increase DURING contract negotiations. The IAM and American Airlines agreed to provide immediate wage increases and continue negotiating other terms and conditions. The IAM has also entered into similar agreements at United Airlines.
There is no law that would prevent Republic Airways management from doing the same. All that is needed is for the union represented workforce and the company to agree to enter into such an agreement.
The larger issue, however, is why is Republic management not telling the truth?
Sadly, Republic management will say and do anything to keep mechanic and related employees from unionizing. At the same time they say they respect your right to unionize, they are spreading misinformation and outright lies and inflating the voter eligibility list. These actions are meant to keep you non-union, without a voice and without any power in the direction of your profession.
Don’t fall for it and tell management to respect your right to form a union.
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Republic Management Says 32 Hours a Week is Not a Pay Cut, is Here to Stay and Submits Voter Eligibility List to NMB
In an insulting email to AMTs, Republic management once again has stated that cutting AMT’s weekly hours from 40 to 32 is NOT a pay and benefit cut and that there is no plan to restore our hours back to 40 per week. A 20 percent reduction in hours is a 20 percent pay cut and a 20 percent cut in our retirement contributions. It is insulting to the intelligence of and disrespectful to every single AMT that Republic management keeps trying to convince us that our pay and benefits have not been cut. The fact is, every single pay period we have 20 percent less money than we should have to make ends meet.
IAM contracts have legally enforceable provisions that guarantee a minimum 40 hours per week for full-time employees, and that’s just one of the many benefits that comes with a contract. We need and deserve the same.
Republic Airways this afternoon submitted the voter eligibility list to the NMB. As expected, Republic management, prodded by its high priced anti-worker law firm--Ford and Harrison--inflated the eligibility list to include every supervisor on the system to slow the process down. The IAM will challenge the inclusion of these ineligible management employees. We are now in the process of reviewing the list to ensure that the remainder is accurate.
All Republic AMTs will be advised on next steps in the process and they become available to the IAM.
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