The National Mediation Board (NMB) today issued a single carrier ruling for the Fleet Service (Ramp) classification at Delta Air Lines. This important ruling sets in motion a 14-day countdown that will determine if the workers in the combined Delta/Northwest Fleet Service classification at Delta will have a secret ballot election.
This 14-day period, which concludes on September 8, 2010, is the last opportunity for pre-merger Delta Fleet Service workers to submit signed election request cards. The NMB requires evidence of “sufficient interest” among employees before it will authorize a union representation election.
There is much riding in the election’s outcome. Delta has said that pre-merger Northwest employees will lose IAM-negotiated contractual benefits, such as pre-age 65 retiree medical benefits and healthcare premiums for active employees that are lower than what pre-merger Delta employees are required to pay. Also at risk is the only active guaranteed pension plan at the airline, paid sick time, occupational injury payments, and more vacation accrual than pre-merger Delta employees.
While IAM members have much to lose, both employee groups have much to gain. Following a successful election, the IAM will help Fleet Service workers negotiate an enforceable contract based on what Fleet workers tell the IAM they want.
Any pre-merger Delta employee in the Fleet Service classification who has not recently submitted a signed and dated election request card should do so without delay. Full-time, part-time and Ready Reserves are all eligible. Election request cards are only valid for 12 months from the date they were signed. Election request cards are available from any IAM representative, by calling 1-800-998-3554 or by completing a form at www.IAM4Delta.org.