INSIGHT FROM YOUR LOCAL
In September, President Danielle Pearce attended the IAM Education Center, W3, for a think tank discussion group focused on diversifying IAM and its leadership. Although IAMAW is one of the most diverse labor unions in North America, our top leadership does not reflect that diversity. IAM is committed to ensuring that leaders represent the diverse membership, which includes individuals from various races, genders, ages, and cultures. This three-day discussion group was designed to address this issue. They discussed obstacles to change, potential solutions, and actionable steps to achieve diversity, including creating mentorship programs, increasing transparency, and actively seeking diverse members for events and opportunities. This group plans to meet again in the future to assess progress and generate more ideas to achieve this goal.
Unity and Growth Conference
In August, President Danielle Pearce attended the IAMAW Unity and Growth Conference in San Diego, CA, along with Recording Secretary Kayla Felix and members from every industry represented by IAMAW. This conference emphasized the importance of protecting the right to organize workers in every workplace. IAM is committed to supporting every workgroup in need of union support and safeguarding workers who may feel taken advantage of or exploited by their employers. We discussed workplace issues and brainstormed solutions to counteract employers who oppose unions. Internal organizing and encouraging all members to become active and advocate for themselves and fellow workers were key points of discussion. In addition to hearing from expert speakers, participated in breakout sessions, allowing them to collaborate with other transportation workers and address workplace challenges. Together, they educated each other and generated ideas to advance the goals of our members and the entire IAM.
Leadership One at W3
Sue-Ann Broomes attended Leadership one at the W3 center in July, here is what she had to say about her time spent there.
"My time at W3 was filled with a plethora of information about the Union that I did not know before. I wish all new FAs could go, it is really very informative. I learned from IAM and members from other lodges. The campus and area is really nice - it's on a lake! Met some really cool 😎 people as well. Pic below is my group mates. Other female lives in Canada. Yes, Canada has IAM members."
In July, President Danielle Pearce and Vice President Mark Diefenbach took part in the Legislative conference held in Washington, DC. Several congressmen and congresswomen attended and discussed their plans to support labor unions and enact future laws. These politicians expressed their support for the labor movement and the growth of labor unions in the near future. The conference focused on the needs and desires of organized workers to improve their quality of life, workplace safety, and future goals. After morning meetings, the afternoons were filled with in-person meetings with our individual congressional representatives to address their specific needs. They emphasized the importance of workplace safety, especially for ramp workers, and advocated for laws to criminalize aggressive passengers in order to protect customer service agents. They also stressed the importance of establishing duty limitations for flight attendants and increasing visibility of our role in passenger safety. They sought support for organizing Delta workers and discussed the importance of enhancing rail safety. This conference was incredibly eye-opening and motivating, underscoring the significance of creating and refining laws that protect transportation workers.
In August, President Danielle Pearce attended the New Jersey State Council Meeting with Conductor Sentinel Kristine Schumacher. Held in Atlantic City, NJ, this conference highlighted the importance of involvement in state and local governments that oversee our workplaces. Flight attendants work all over the world, knowing the laws that protect them and being familiar with local lawmakers who support them in the workplace are increasingly important given the current state of the United States. Similar to the DC Legislative conference, they heard from many lawmakers and elected officials. They discussed topics important to them as transportation workers and voiced their concerns to those lawmakers responsible for crafting laws to protect their rights and workplace safety.
In May, President Danielle Pearce and Vice President Mark Diefenbach visited the William W. Winpisinger Center, affectionately known as W3. During time there, they learned from several professionals in the industry about effective negotiation techniques. They learned about tactics commonly used by companies and the laws governing our negotiation rules. Additionally, they worked with the IAM Strategic Resources department, who presented the results of the contract surveys that were distributed. They discussed the most effective strategies for this round of negotiations, participated in a mock negotiation, and formulated our negotiation plan. They will apply this knowledge and education in our upcoming negotiations with the company.
Aircraft Cabin Air Quality Conference
In May, President Danielle Pearce attended an international conference on Cabin Air Quality. This conference was held virtually over the course of 3 days. Speakers included experts from doctors, mechanics, researchers, flight attendants, data analysts, pilots, and more from every corner of the earth. This is a global conference, and poor cabin air quality is a global problem. When bleed air from the aircraft engines becomes contaminated with burning oil, that air is then recirculated into the cabins. This contaminated air can be toxic to those breathing it in, leading to a host of health issues. The cabin air quality team is conducting research on long-term health issues, investigating how to better detect contamination, and researching oils that can be substituted without being toxic when inhaled. Teams are also working on identifying the source of the issue and determining where the responsibility lies, including examining individual airlines and how it has been concealed in the past. This committee is actively working to find a solution to this problem to ensure that no flight attendant, pilot, or passenger ever encounters this issue in the future.