7th Negotiation Session Update

Our seventh bargaining session with Bristow, seeking improvements to our existing Collective Bargaining Agreement has concluded. Your Union and Company representatives met Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday of this week in Lafayette, Louisiana.

We began once again with lively discussions around seniority and the bidding process. We are pleased to report that both sides are working together and are close to achieving an agreeable compromise on Article 8 and Article 16. We are also pleased to report we were able to tentatively agree on the language of Article 29.

We will be meeting with the Company on July 16th to get a financial report prior to presenting our economic proposals.

We have entered a difficult and critical stage of the negotiation process. Your negotiating team will continue to work diligently to reach an end result that the Union can recommend for your acceptance and ratification.

The parties have scheduled our next bargaining session for August 21st thru the 23rd.

As always, we will keep you promptly advised with timely Union Negotiation Updates shortly after each bargaining session.

In Solidarity,
Your OPEIU Local 407 Bargaining Team
George Evans
Paul Rivait
Chad Prejean

Click here for a full summary of ArticlesStatus of Negotiations – 06-21-2018

Negotiation Update 6

Dear fellow members,
After our recent bargaining session, the Bristow bargaining team update seems to misrepresent the positions of the two sides. Like we stated in our letter to you, the proposal we presented for furlough and recall purposes gives value to your many years of service with the Company, regardless of which cadre you may have time in. The Company proposal, on the other hand,
eliminates all seniority you might have from another cadre, even if you were to return to that cadre at a later date. The Company’s proposal would have members furloughed based on their time in a particular work group, and then recalled based on the management’s definition of “Qualified” with no regard to even your Cadre Seniority.
“Qualified” in this sense is a variable, based on what they determine their needs to be at the time. This would allow them to furlough a large number of employees, then cherry pick those they want to keep, bypassing anyone they feel is unworthy. Also, keep in mind that the definition of “Qualified” can change based on who the management staff at the time.

The second misrepresentation is on the subject of training selection. The Company originally proposed that 100% of training opportunities would be by Company selection. We countered with 100% by Seniority. The Company then came back with the idea of 50% of “factory school training made available by the manufacturer due to the acquisition” then said if they wanted, all
schools could be at the local training level, in which case it returns to 100% Company selection. What this means in plain English is they would only allow seniority to be a factor in schools they get when they buy a new aircraft from a manufacturer. And even then, they want the ability to select who goes from the seniority pick, not necessarily the highest seniority member that bids.
Any additional schools, after those received as part of a purchasing deal with the manufacturer, would revert to Company selection regardless of location.

And finally, it is most certainly worth noting that they failed to mention their proposed redrawing of Cadre in Article 8. The Company says they need to ability to further target individuals for furlough by dividing up cadres into even more compartmentalized groups.
The Union negotiating team understands the need of the Company to send individuals to school to fulfill certain requirements. But the truth of the matter is that Training and Furlough/Recall rights go hand in hand.

Again, your Union negotiating team is standing strong on these issues, and others that you, the members, have told us are important to you. We are in a critical time of negotiations. We must all stand strong together in order to achieve the best possible Collective Bargaining Agreement we can.

In Solidarity,
Your Negotiating Team
George Evans- President, OPEIU Local 407
Paul Rivait- Recording Secretary, OPEIU Local 407
Chad Prejean- Trustee, OPEIU Local 407