TWU Local 555 District 4 Cities

 

TWU Local 555 District 4 Representative Mark Waters

 

 
DISPLACED RAMPERS — FORCED FURLOUGHS 
I just wanted to say a few words regarding our new brothers and sisters from Air Tran. More specifically, I wanted to address the issue of the Air Tran employees who have already joined us. I am more  than aware of the fallout fromthe recent arbitration decision, and I believe the panel of three arbitrators failed to recognize the contributions our current members have made to the success of our work group and the industry-leading contract we have. However, I should first point out that our  fight was never against the employees of Air Tran. Most of them are just happy to be working for our company and looking forward to the huge improvements in quality of life. Now several of our cities are seeing former Air Tran employees being required to move into locations that they have never been and never wanted to move to. They had no choice. Their option was either move or our company will fire you. Before we put up defenses against our new brothers and sisters, let’s look at why they’re joining us now in the first place. In BNA, we have seen a handful of Air Tran employees join our ramp. These folks didn’t come to BNA looking to push our current members down in seniority. They didn’t come to BNA with the intent of making waves and getting our members pissed off. They came because it was the only way they were going to keep their jobs with our company! If you have been following the news, you noticed how our company decided to continue operations in several Air Tran cities but also decided to shake things up a bit personnelwise. In essence, if you worked the ramp in FNT or MEM and you wanted to keep your job, you weren’t going to do so in FNT and MEM. Was it because our company no longer wanted to serve those cities? No. Our company has said that they intend to continue serving these markets. They just didn’t want to be bothered with having to maintain a payroll for the current Air Tran employees working below the wing, so our company contracted that work out. If the Air Tran employees could not pick up and move to another station that our company chose, their employment would be terminated. If they wished to continue working, they had to relocate to a limited number of locations our company approved for them to relocate to in order to continue their employment with our company, leaving their homes, families and friends behind if they wanted to keep a job. Our company may intend to outsource several more cities while still serving the market, just because they can! Let us as TWU 555 members take the high road and welcome these new members with open arms: they have left familiar surroundings just to stay employed with our company and are not looking to make waves. If our company insists on laying people off in current Air Tran cities just because they can, the least we can do as TWU 555 members is welcome these displaced employees who are just trying to continue earning a living. Winter is coming. As the chill hits the air and the weather gets rougher in many stations, please be careful and remainsafe. And I hope as the holidays approach, everyone can be home with their families
 
Mark Waters