September 17th can be a day that goes into the labor history record. Those who choose to vote no on the US Airways restructuring proposal presented to the members of IAM District 141-M will have gained the attention of both labor and management academics. It will be an example of employees who have some of the best and envied language in a Collective Bargaining Agreement deciding that it is worth sacrificing (never to be reinstated) to demonstrate their anger and frustration at both the company and the union. The bankruptcy judge, for them, is the preferred decision maker whether we retain our work rules and benefits (with modifications until snap backs). US Airways--one of the hated parties-will set the new rules, with no snap backs ever, for the next 6 Â½ years. The company is not bluffing. This is the second time the same proposal has been presented; they were not bluffing the first time. The company is clear that they need this agreement-not only for the ATSB loan, but in order that the Debtor in Possession financing becomes available at the next level to enable the company to continue to operate. US Airways again is not bluffing when they again tell us they want to abrogate, nullify, eliminate our Collective Bargaining Agreement. Some of the language that will never be seen again:
There will be no scope language-this presently is what keeps all US Airways aircraft the exclusive work of ALL 141-M members.
There will be no successorship clause.
There will be no Allegheny-Mohawk labor protection.
There will be no seniority-at will employees have no employment protection.
There will be no swaps
There will be no paid moves or bumping rights.
There will be no restricted stock distribution,
There will be no medical coverage for retirees.
There will be no severance-except that which is established by law.
There will be no 85 point plan for retirement.
There will be no seniority accrual on lay-off.
The benefits of the retiree''s, who fought for the language in this CBA, will be at risk by those who they tried to protect.
Emotion needs to be replaced with logic and reason. If you vote no there will not be another day to fight; the company will take that away. The short-term gain will not have any long-term benefits-except unemployment. Think of others who want to keep their benefits and wages (even when reduced, better than unemployment or entry level positions) before you vote.
If you vote NO, the decision makers who everyone is so upset with for putting us in this mess are the very same ones who will be dictating your new wages and work rules. That alone is enough to frighten anyone.
A year ago a group of people who were full of hate, behaving based on principals, believing that they would find paradise, took action against other people. The result was devastation to thousands of people and families. History repeats itself in many forms, many not as obvious and not as quickly.