March Business Agents' Report

BAQ ‘Grandfathering’ under the 2010 Agreement

There has been some confusion about the BAQ grandfathering rights for former sub-UAL technicians. Here, we will outline the Union’s position with regard to that issue and give you the rationale behind that position.

First, we need to make clear that all the BAQ grandfathering that we have referenced in recent months ‘officially’ took place when the stand-alone CBA was ratified back in 2011. We urged the Company back then, for obvious reasons, to make sure to get all the BAQ’s established and all the grandfathering taken care of prior to completion of an amalgamated CBA. The reason for this was simply because we did not want the grandfathering issue to get muddy once we did get an amalgamated agreement. Unfortunately, the Company did not get it done. But, nevertheless, our position on the matter has not changed: All of the technicians on the Seniority list as of the Date of Ratification of the stand alone agreement ratified in 2011 are entitled to BAQ grandfathering for any BAQ to which they were able to bid prior to the agreement without taking a test. The reason for our position is simple.

With the introduction of the new definitions for the various Bid Areas, we could not accept a situation where former sub-UAL technicians would have diminished bidding rights as compared with our former sub-CAL counterparts when it comes to the Filling of Vacancies under Article 5. In other words, before the introduction of the new Bid Areas in the last CBA, a technician had the right to bid to all of these areas and be considered equally amongst any folks that were bidding the vacancy. The only factor that determined who was awarded the vacancy was seniority. With the introduction of the new Bid Areas and the anticipated move to eBID, as well as a more streamlined system of bidding vacancies, meaning elimination of Special Postings language from old sub-CAL agreement which required a new posting every time the ‘requirements’ were changed to attract more candidates (such as current G2 or G3 Sort Groups), it was important for us to make sure that the former sub-UAL technicians bidding rights were not diminished in any way. Because of the structure of the eBid System of bidding vacancies, the only way that could happen was to make sure that all of our technicians were grandfathered in all of those BAQ’s for which they could previously bid without taking a test. That expectation still exists.

We have seen the various matrices that the Company has put together regarding ‘like’ BAQ’s and the Company’s intent to grant qualifications to our folks in multiple BAQ’s after consideration of their work experience and the similar nature of some of the BAQ’s (example: 105 and 106). Generally, we do not have any issues with these systems, but we insist that they be applied on a ‘going forward’ basis, after completion of required grandfathering for our folks on the seniority list at Date of Ratification of the last CBA.

By not making sure that the grandfathering was taken care of prior to the amalgamated CBA, the Company created a confusing situation that we are doing our best to work through.

We have been involved in weekly discussions with the Company about these issues and we are making significant progress in clearing things so we urge you all to continue submitting BAQ requests for those BAQ’s for which you are entitled until those request are approved. If those requests continue to be denied, make sure to reach out to your Shop Steward so they can initiate contact with management to get things resolved.

In regards to those Bid Areas that require a Trade Test, the eBid process allows you to submit requests at any time. That way, you can be considered in the first tier of bidders as long as you request the Trade Test prior to the opening of a vacancy for that Bid Area. But you must make sure to take the initiative and submit your Trade Test requests for any area that you feel you are qualified or else you might miss out on being sorted into Sort Group G1. This process assures fair consideration for all of our folks in comparison to our former sub-CAL counterparts for all vacancies in Bid Areas requiring a Trade Test and, therefore, requires no special consideration in terms of grandfathering. Hope this information helps.

Moving forward, if you feel that there is a topic in the CBA that you would like us to clarify further, please feel free to reach out to your Shop Steward or you can email either one of us directly at or

SFO GSE Equipment Safety Inspection Program

In 2014, the Airport implemented the Ground Support Equipment Safety Inspection Program (GSESIP) and have since then performed periodic safety inspections and audits on United’s GSE. In the most recent audit in 2016, GSE performance improved by 26.7% to an outstanding score of 96%. We want to give a shout out to all of out GSE technicians and congratulate you on taking care of business.

United sends out Your Spending Account (YSA) Mailer

By now, all of you should have received a mailer from the Company regarding Your Spending Account (YSA). In the past, you would have only received YSA information if you were a participant in the Flexible Spending Account (FSA) program. Now, with the addition of the VEBA language in our agreement, which gives you $1.20 for all compensable hours up to 2080 per year, you will all have a Health Reimbursement Account (HRA) or Retiree Health Account (RHA) established April 2, 2017. If you are enrolled in a Company medical plan, your VEBA contribution will be deposited in your HRA and you can use it for premiums or eligible expenses, except if you are enrolled in the High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP). In that case, different rules will apply. If you are not enrolled in a Company medical plan your VEBA money will be deposited in your RHA and it will be available upon retirement or separation from the Company.  Please read the mailer carefully and refer to the YBR website on Flying Together for more information.

Labor History for the Month of March

March 29th, 1937 - The U.S. Supreme Court, in West Coast Hotel Co. v. Parrish, upholds the constitutionality of minimum wage legislation enacted by the State of Washington, overturning a decision in 1923 that held that federal minimum wage legislation for women was an unconstitutional infringement of liberty of contract. The case was brought by Elsie Parrish, a hotel housekeeper who lost her job and did not receive back wages in line with the state’s minimum wage for women law.

March 25th, 1911 - A fire breaks out on the top floors of the Triangle Waist Company’s Asch Building in New York City. Unable to escape because they had been locked in by their employer, 146 workers died, most of them young immigrant women. The tragedy inspired a movement for workplace safety and a crackdown on sweatshops.

March 19th, 1917 - The U.S. Supreme Court upholds the constitutionality of the Adamson Act, a federal law that established an 8-hour workday, with overtime pay, for interstate railway workers. Congress passed the law in 1916 to avert a nationwide rail strike.

We must never forget!

Labor Quotes

Every advance in this half-century--Social Security, civil rights, Medicare, aid to education, one after another--came with the support and leadership of American Labor — Jimmy Carter

The mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few (born) to ride them — Thomas Jefferson

Stay Informed

The communication process is an extremely important part of what we do to represent our folks here at SFO and, as we have been outlining for quite some time, we have been blasting out the BA Report along with any other communication we get from the Airline Division or the International to anyone who registers at the TeamstersSFO website. Additionally, there are weekly meetings held with the Shop Stewards to pass on any important informational items that may come up during the month. It is crucial to our process that every area on every shift have Shop Steward representation and that the Shop Steward give, at a minimum, weekly briefings to his/her crew so that the information gets to our members. We feel that it is essential for all of our members to be engaged and informed at all times. Therefore, we encourage all of you to spread the word to your fellow technicians to go to the TeamstersSFO website and click on the ‘email signup’ tab to get on the list. And, most importantly, we urge you to also consider getting more involved. Every month, on the last Thursday, we hold Craft Meetings at Local 856. At these meetings, the membership hears reports from the Business Agents and other members of the SFO Committee on Grievances, Safety, Member Assistance, and TSAP. Additionally, all members have an opportunity to ask questions and to bring up topics for discussion. Check your IBT Bulletin Board for dates and times and make it a point to stop by.

As always, stay informed!

In Solidarity

Mark DesAngles                    Javier Lectora
Business Agent                     Business Agent
Local 986                              Local 856