Dig a little deeper

DB Cooper

Aug 20, 2002
Seat 18C
UPDATE - United seeks deeper cost cuts from labor--unions
Friday February 14, 7:15 pm ET
By Meredith Grossman Dubner
(Adds union, company comments and background)
CHICAGO, Feb 14 (Reuters) - Unions representing United Airlines pilots and flight attendants said on Friday the bankrupt carrier is now seeking $2.56 billion in annual cost cuts from its employee groups, up from a previous figure of $2.4 billion.

Union leaders said the airline, in a two-page letter they received on Thursday, detailed how labor cost cuts would be allocated among its employee groups.
Although union leaders said the proposal was a first step in the negotiating process, they called on the company to provide more information on how it has arrived at the labor cost-cutting figures.
This document is simply the first step in what promises to be an intense process of negotiations, Paul Whiteford, head of the United''s unit of the Air Line Pilots Association (News - Websites), said in a letter to union members.
A spokeswoman for United parent UAL Corp. (NYSE:UAL - News), which filed the largest bankruptcy in aviation history on Dec. 9, said she could not confirm the numbers released by the unions.
As the plan for transformation has evolved and as the economic environment remains unstable, the amount of labor cost savings needed has evolved as well, UAL spokeswoman Chris Nardella said.
ALPA spokesman Dave Kelly said United now wants $1.116 billion in annual labor cost cuts from its 8,800 pilots, the airline''s highest paid work group. Pilots have already agreed to temporary wage cuts of 29 percent as the union and management work on long-term concessions.
United now wants $314 million from its 20,000 flight attendants, a greater share of the total labor wage cuts than what the airline had previously sought, said Sara Dela Cruz, a spokeswoman for the Association of Flight Attendants.
Flight attendants are also working under temporary 9-percent pay cuts.
What we''ve been given to date is not a business plan, it is a marketing presentation, and it''s going over like a ton of bricks with the employees who make up United Airlines, Greg Davidowitch, head of United''s AFA branch, said in a statement.
Davidowitch said he was particularly troubled by the fact that flight attendants, some of the company''s lowest-paid workers, were asked to bear a greater percentage of the burden while management''s share of the wage cuts was reduced.
Both unions, however, said they were still committed to working with the airline on developing a successful reorganization plan.
United has until mid-March to negotiate permanent cost cuts with its unions. If it cannot reach agreements with its unions by then, the airline will ask a bankruptcy judge to void its labor agreements so that it can meet financing terms set up by its lenders.
United has arranged a $1.5 billion financing package with four large institutions, but it cannot tap into a large chunk of that money without reaching certain financial targets.
Whiteford said United''s letter did not address the economics of a proposed low-cost carrier, part of United''s transformation plan.
United said this week that it plans to shift up to 30 percent of its U.S. capacity to a proposed low-cost unit to compete with discount airlines that have eaten away at market share. But the airline has not provided details on how or when it intends to start the low-cost arm.
The proposal has been met by heavy opposition from union leaders because of pay and contract issues. (Additional reporting by David Bailey)



Aug 22, 2002
"evolution", I like that part. Brace must have dusted off a thesaurus to come up with a 4 syllable word that aptly describes where his thought process is devolving.

Here are some facts:

The recent cash payout in the form of bonuses for the “Key Employee Retention Programâ€￾ (the effort to prevent the “brain drainâ€￾ that was soooo feared) on the heels of system wide paycuts has not lowered morale - it has outraged and mobilized labor.

There has been an ongoing and continuing “talent drainâ€￾ from the labor pool over the past two years that has been unseen due to cutbacks, deferrals, postponements, delays and the fact that management has no interest nor knowledge of developments within the labor ranks. It has created a void that will become all too apparent in the near future. Any talent that remains is here for reasons that are wholly different from what United management imagines. Many workers feel, rightfully so, that this is more THEIR company than Glenn Tilton, Jake Brace or Doug Hacker and they are willing to fight for it, tooth and nail, and bring the whole mess down rather than allow it to be raped by these charlatans.

The only way this company is EVER going to survive and prosper is if management gets down on their knees, right now, and begs the workers to save their sorry butts from this God awful mess that they have created.


Oct 31, 2002

The only way this company is EVER going to survive and prosper is if management gets down on their knees, right now, and begs the workers to save their sorry butts from this God awful mess that they have created.


Isn't that what Mr. Goodwin tried?

casual rat

Aug 25, 2002
Goodwin was the crackhead who literally threw away money on pipedreams. We need to coin a new term:Goodwin-cost as opposed to labor cost. He got rewarded for it too. Same idiots, currently in charge, same stupid plan...Insanity is doing the same thing, expecting different results. America....it scares me how the dumb/irresponsible/liars are rewarded, and the hardworking are punished...Oh well...