Flight Attendants at Continental Micronesia (CMI), represented by the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) have announced they have reached a “Bridge Agreement” with their management. CMI Flight Attendants will be offered a one-time irrevocable transfer to Continental subsidiary Domestic operation at either Houston or Newark, to be placed at the bottom of the Continental seniority list. The effective date of this transfer is October 18, 2011 for all CMI Flight Attendants electing to exercise this option.
Earlier this year, United management offered a similar Cross-Over Program to United Flight Attendants. The United Master Executive Council (MEC) reviewed and debated the proposal from management and unanimously agreed that it had no benefit for United Flight Attendants. Survey results and input from our Membership overwhelmingly supported the decision not to negotiate a hiring agreement for the Continental subsidiary that would place United Flight Attendants at the bottom of their seniority list.
Our Contract contains comprehensive provisions for addressing an overstaffing situation through our Voluntary Furlough program, which protect seniority, maintains benefits and protects jobs. Under our Contract you maintain seniority accrual, health care and on-line pass travel benefits as if on active status.
Unlike the Cross-Over Program management proposed to United Flight Attendants, our Voluntary Furlough language has a definitive end date with the right of return to your active Domicile; as well as the ability to return to work early through a hardship request. These are two key protections in our Contract language that are omitted from any Cross-Over Program proposed by management.
The Continental Micronesia MEC has agreed to offer this option to their Flight Attendants because input from CMI Flight Attendant’s indicates an interest in the program. Additionally, CMI has only one base in Guam and there is no path for relief when the company schedule creates an overstaffing situation, unlike there is for United Flight Attendants. While likely not an attractive option for many CMI Flight Attendants, this offer may provide relief to some.
Flight Attendants from CMI who accept the agreement and transfer to Continental, will be placed at the bottom of the Continental seniority list for the duration of their transfer. The CMI Flight Attendants will preserve their current CMI seniority for the AFA seniority integration process, which maintains Flight Attendants’ bidding seniority on the merged seniority list. Their accrued seniority from CMI will take effect only upon membership ratification of a Single Contract that will provide improvements for all 25,000 Flight Attendants at the new United.