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The AFA's Delta Busting Plan

What can we Expect from the Association of Flight Attendants once they petition for a union election?

Once the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) petitions the National Mediation Board (NMB) to conduct a secret ballot election for the Delta Flight Attendants to vote for union representation, you can expect the AFA to take most if not all of the following actions. You can also expect variations. These are typical actions taken by unions as they attempt to drive a wedge of fear and mistrust between employees and management. They are time tested and quite predictable. The thing to remember is why the AFA wants to organize us to begin with:

The AFA is in a weakened financial position and desperately needs to recruit more members if it is going to survive as a major player in the United States labor movement.

The following actions will be the unionís attempts at making you mistrust management, generating false enthusiasm for the union drive, and tricking you into submitting a yes vote in the election:

The AFAís Organizing Plan includes:

AFA media blitz (could include attacks on the company, personal attacks on members of management e.g. Vicki "Mascara", Sharon "Fibben," the Flight Attendant "Floorscum," statements from activists that they have been "mistreated," and simplified sound bites like "we just want it in writing" or it can be warm fuzzy "we just want to give you a voice")

The AFA will send letters and glossy propaganda flyers to your homes. (Assuming the AFA has not run out of money.) If funds are short, expect activists to hand out letters and flyers extolling the virtues of the AFA.

An attempt to elicit sympathy by trying to portray Delta as being unfair. Most likely by lodging trumped up charges against Delta with the NMB.

Increased numbers of other airline flight attendants making testimonials and other union members offering support for the AFA campaign in the airports, in letters, and on the AFA website.

Generate envy and jealousy of management by constantly mentioning pay.

Continued meetings with activists, phone banking, and conference calls to try to keep Delta AFA activists from becoming demoralized as support for the union drive wanes.

Resurgence of past pro-union literature.

Creating a climate where flight attendants react emotionally instead of thinking through and analyzing issues.

An attempt to show that key AFA management is responsive to its members. Expect things like "fax Pat Friend," and the AFA EAP is there for you.

Delta AFA activists will become MORE aggressive. Expect more personal attacks on anti-union voices. There will be a vilification of the leaders of the anti-union grassroots groups. If you do not agree with the AFA party line, you will be labeled a Cool-Aid drinker or worse. Expect to feel more pressure from AFA activists on the aircraft, in the concourses, in the lounges, and on layovers.

Expect to see false conversions as activists try make us think that flight attendants are changing their minds and coming over to support the AFA. Example: "I was a fence sitter, but now I am definitely voting YES."

When you ask an activist if they can guarantee any improvements, they will become defensive.

Possible THEMES of these activities will include:

The economy is not good. With a legally binding contract, we can protect you from furloughs with a "no furlough" clause like we have at US Airways.

Give us a chance, we really are pro-Delta, pro-union, and pro-USA. Honest.

Join with 50,000 other AFA members. If mediocrity is good enough for them, it should be good enough for you.

Cherry picking of contracts. The AFA will hold out the best parts of every union contract and say that they can get it all here for the Delta flight attendants.

If you vote in a union, you do not start from scratch, and you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

You will never be an adult unless you form a union and then get them to negotiate for you.

It is better to have the respect and dignity of a contract than industry leading wages.

The AFA will try to associate themselves with better unions that have been effective like ALPA and APFA.

What should we do about it?
A strong offence is our best defense.

Remember WHY we do not want a union at Delta:

Whenever the AFA has a seat at the negotiating table at other airlines, most often it is a high chair.

The AFA cannot enforce its legally binding contracts.

The AFA negotiates retirement benefits inferior to our retirement benefits.

The AFA will distort the truth to make itself look good.

The AFA needs our money to shore up its shaky finances.

The AFA will cause more dissension in our ranks if they come into power.

Because we do not want the AFAís outside agenda to hijack our company and our future.

Because the AFA has proven that it cannot protect jobs.

Because we do not want to put our families, ourselves, and the company at risk because AFA International wants to prove something by striking at Delta.

Because we do not believe that the activists leading this organizing drive have the expertise, the temperament, or the ability to assume responsibility for our futures should we elect them.

We do not want AFA representation to cause us to be furloughed. 


Tell the activists when they ask to speak with you that you are happy with the Delta wages, benefits, and working conditions and that you plan to work with management to ensure the future success of Delta Air Lines.

Tell your flying partners that these activists are pawns in the union attempt to gain money and political power by organizing us

Go to www.deltafa.org or www.4freedomforce.com to join together with other flight attendants that do not want a union.

Wear your Delta! pin. You have the right to do so and it gives others the courage to do the same.

Ask your coworkers not to submit a ballot in the upcoming election and when your ballot comes to your mailbox, shred it and show the AFA that you will not be a pawn in their quest to gain political power at your expense.



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Last modified: December 13, 2008