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Topic: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Brido
Posted 2003-12-16 03:03:06 and read 5140 times.

***From the Association of Flight Attendants' Website***



Flight Attendants Will Be Certified
After nearly a yearlong battle, Congress recently passed an FAA Reauthorization bill that includes provisions to certify flight attendants for our role as safety professionals. This is an important milestone for all flight attendants – it will help strengthen our role as air safety professionals and better define our status onboard the aircraft, to passengers and crew alike. AFA hopes to continue building on the success of this victory to ensure many more safeguards and improvements for our profession.

In fact, AFA’s Constitution and Bylaws specifically list certification as one of the primary objectives of the union. According to the Constitution and Bylaws, AFA’s Objective #4 is:

“To promote the interest of the profession and to safeguard the rights, individually and collectively, of the members of the Union by securing the long-range goal of flight attendant certification.”

We have finally achieved that “long-range goal” and can now build upon this success to improve our profession even further.

Until now, all work groups overseen by the FAA have been certified to perform their jobs. Upon completion of their training, every employee from pilots to parachute packers receives a certificate, which is required to perform their jobs. But flight attendants – who receive extensive safety training, and now, in the post September 11th world, are required to act as security personnel in the aircraft cabin – had never been certified. Our lack of certification allowed us to be categorized as second-class employees and continue to be viewed – despite our extensive safety and security training – by our companies, the government and the flying public as merely “waitresses in the sky.”

But no more. With passage of this legislation, we have finally been recognized as the professionals we are and received the respect we have long sought and deserved. No more will the government, our employers and the public be able to simply view us as servers in the air. We have finally been recognized for our safety roles and will forever be considered primarily as safety professionals onboard the aircraft.

Aside from the overdue respect and recognition we will now receive, certification provides a number of other important benefits. It will help lead to the portability of our jobs and make us more marketable to airlines that may be hiring, as it will standardize our profession and create incentives for airlines to hire experienced flight attendants over other applicants. An airline that hires a certified flight attendant would no longer have to send them through the entire initial training program; the airline specific training would suffice because the flight attendant’s certification would serve as proof that they had completed initial training.

Our certification will provide us with the ability to earn further recognition at the bargaining table. Management will now be forced to recognize that our professional role is an important piece in the safety of the entire aircraft.

Certification will also help improve our training. Currently, carriers are granted too many waivers, which allow them to skip or ‘water down’ crucial safety training. We hope to build on the success of certification to provide a level playing field for all training. When certified, flight attendants should receive the same level of training, regardless of the whims of their carriers.

Most importantly, certification would not require flight attendants to receive any new training or medical clearance. Flight attendants will simply receive certification for the training we are already required to complete. Nothing new will be required.

According to the new law, all current flight attendants will continue to serve as flight attendants; within one year of the law’s enactment, the FAA will issue certificates to all current flight attendants. In addition, the FAA has 120 days to issue certificates to flight attendants hired after enactment of the law or upon completion of recurrent training. The certificates will appear similar to those issued to pilots, and will contain each flight attendant’s appropriate information such as name and address, and will include the airplane group for which the flight attendant is certified.

Congratulations to everyone on this important victory and thanks to every one who kept the pressure on Congress and made this AFA victory a reality.





   
  Privacy Policy  © Copyright 2003-2004 Association of Flight Attendants

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Flyf15
Posted 2003-12-16 03:08:11 and read 5127 times.

Ah very cool, does this mean that flight attendant will be added to the long list of FAA licenses (including Pilot, Flight Instructor, Mechanic, Dispatcher, Air Traffic Controller, ...)?

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Captaingomes
Posted 2003-12-16 03:13:19 and read 5114 times.

Far too much use of the word "professional" in there. I am old fashioned in the sense that the word "professional" should be left for those occupations requiring significant education and training. A true profession will also have the ability to govern itself through its own association. This is true of doctors, lawyers, accountants and engineers. Using the word "professional" for every single occupation out there with any form of training is prostituting the word.

Anyways, despite my little argument there, I do think this is a step in the right direction for this occupation. I just hope it doesn't drive up the labour costs and inhibit new entrants into the job market.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Phatfarmlines
Posted 2003-12-16 03:39:08 and read 5066 times.

While I am 100% for flight attendants being considered for their safety roles as their #1 priority, this could be used as an excuse by *some* F.A.s to contribute to further degradation in current service levels.

I hope this certification will not change the attitudes of those F.A.s in the U.S. who work really hard and keep an attentive eye on their customers, whom they are being paid their wages by.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: PiedmontGirl
Posted 2003-12-16 03:50:19 and read 5037 times.

Phatfarmlines:

While I am 100% for flight attendants being considered for their safety roles as their #1 priority, this could be used as an excuse by *some* F.A.s to contribute to further degradation in current service levels.

Every flight attendant who posts here knows all about flight attendants who don't want to actually work. After all, we work with them. Just like the employees anywhere else know all about the folks who just want to goof off.

If it's not this excuse, it would just be another. You know how people like that are: they never run out of excuses.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Fly727
Posted 2003-12-16 04:53:27 and read 4948 times.


Absolutely see the point here. It was necessary in order to have a standard in the formation of the F/A. If not a 5 year career it certainly can be considered a profession, specially when several hours of study needs to be taken in important topics such as safety, aeromedical factors, etc.

Here in Mexico the F/A courses are conducted by private institutions -schools- which are under the supervision of the Authorities. They can also be given by an airline's Authorized Training Center (to certificate an airline to provide these courses it takes a lot of paperwork). Every center has to stick to a general study program and guidelines, have their instructors current and certified in instructional techniques (like FAA's Fundamentals Of Instructing) and in general comply with the requirements set and enforced with inspections. Subjects goes from First Aids, aeromedical, Weather, some basic aerodynamics, English, etc.

Course duration goes from 6 months to 1 year at the regular schools (depending on their very own schedule and extra subjects and classes to attend) and in some occasions three months in the more intensive airline training center. After completion of the course then every center forwards the certificate and enrollment documents (i.e passports, birth certificate, medical certificate -by an Aviation MD- etc) to the Authority who then issues a License. By the way; just like in the pilot's license, the F/A's must have a "type rating" for every equipment they fly on.

Complex but efficient. At least it guarantees a good level of efficiency of the crew.

I'm pretty sure something similar will come out in the US with the FAA reauthorization.

RM  Smile

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Brido
Posted 2003-12-16 05:34:22 and read 4909 times.

I have been a Flight Attendant for over 15 years. By way of furloughs, mergers, etc. I recently underwent "initial training" number 8. EIGHT TIMES 3-5 weeks of my professional life learning THE ABSOULUTE BASICS.

As someone that has been a Flight Attendant crewmember for so many years, I resent that I must sit in a classroom for many weeks to be "taught" that seat belts must be fastened whenever the "Fasten Seat Belt Sign" is illuminated. Or that the Captain is the ultimate authority as to the command of the aircraft. Or that "sterile cockpit" is in effect for all operations beneath 10000 feet. I mean: What a waste of my time, the airline's time, and my professional abilities; to make me sit in a classroom learning these basics, when I have worked as a FA for so long.

As a result of this new certification legislation, it will now be UNDERSTOOD that I am aware of the "basic indoctrination" topics covered in initial Flight Attendant training. I will be able to take my license to any air carrier and simply undergo the training relative to the safety/emergency procedures for their given aircraft type. Together with airline-specific policies and procedures training, I will be ready in very short order to perform the duties of Flight Attendant crewmember on that aircraft.

Parachute Packers get certified! Why in the world not certify Flight Attendant crewmembers that have shown time and again that they are on the "front-lines" of cabin safety and emergency situations?

By the way we are one of the only remaining countries that DO NOT certify their cabin crew! Also, I used the AFA Announcement as a point of reference but my company is NON UNION and I am not a particularly pro-labor person. I thought they did a pretty good job in outlining the background of this important subject, and that is why I posted the AFA message.

Looking forward to other comments on this matter.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: PiedmontGirl
Posted 2003-12-16 07:15:25 and read 4828 times.

Brido:

There is a common misconception that safety and service are two totally different things that are totally exclusive of each other.

They are different, but they go hand in hand and at some points literally merge.

No one ever did "good service" by having luggage hanging out of overhead racks. No one ever performed a "safety function" by being sloppy about handing out coffee or looking sour and dour.

It would be hard to find a more important service to a passenger than keeping him alive after a heart attack so a hospital and doctors could do a complete job on him.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Jhooper
Posted 2003-12-16 08:14:19 and read 4789 times.

I am all for Flight Attendants being certificated by the FAA. That means the FAA will have greater oversight of flight attendants and will be able to establish more uniform standards for their training, testing, and continuing education.

I am, however, a little surprised that the flight attendants themselves seek more regulation of their profession by the FAA. I would have thought that they'd try to keep the FAA off their backs for as long as possible. I don't see how the imposition of new FAA certification standards will give the F/A union more say in how their jobs are performed. Now they will be subject to adverse certificate action and penalities improsed by the Feds (in addition to trouble they'd otherwise get into by their airline) for their mistakes. I'd love to hear your points of view, but I really don't foresee this extra layer of bureaucracy making your jobs any easier. I haven't actually read the new law, but you'll likely be required to do more, not less. At least hopefully when you change companies, you'll be entitled to credit for training you already have, although I'm sure you'll still have to attend a great deal of initial training at each new airline (just as licensed pilots are required to complete), and probably more recurrent training than you already recieve in order to maintain your certification.

So, all in all, I think it's a good move from a safety perspective, so I think it's a good idea. But with that certificate comes higher levels of responsibility that you didn't have before, so I hope that's what you want.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: PiedmontGirl
Posted 2003-12-16 08:27:22 and read 4778 times.

Jhooper:

I also wonder about things like having to carry insurance -- loss of certification insurance (pilots carry loss of license insurance). How much it might cost. I wonder if flight attendants will need liability insurance, and how much that might cost.

I also wonder if this involves the licensing of flight attendants.

There are a lot of questions about this that I'd like to have answered.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Aviaction
Posted 2003-12-16 10:11:23 and read 4746 times.

PiedmontGirl

There is a common misconception that safety and service are two totally different things that are totally exclusive of each other.

They are different, but they go hand in hand and at some points literally merge.


Once again, you are ever so right!
One of these points is called "psychology": A rude, sour-looking F/A simply doesn't make his/her passengers feel safe. If a F/A has this "couldn't care less" air and attitude, why should s/he be taken seriously by the passengers?

A good, compassionate, thinking F/A does make the passengers feel safe and protected. Only s/he can "defuse" safety-threatening situations on board. I'm not talking "real" emergencies here, but moments (e.g. unruly passengers) that might lead to real emergencies.

And the following is just my very personal view on this topic: I am sure that passengers who actually feel safe and protected on board are less likely to panic, which increases their factual safety enormously.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Flyguyclt
Posted 2003-12-16 14:26:14 and read 4685 times.

PIEDMONT GIRL FOR ANET PRESIDENT !

Ok, serious now. Unfortunatly the reason (in my opinion) that some flight attendants hide behind the SAFETY issue for their own lack of service tallent . They are just lazy. Period. So lets call them what they are and get over it . Now there are sometimes that I am working minimum crew and I am watching the cabin and someone asks me for help. I politely tell them. I need to watch things and as soon as everyone is on board. I'll get you exactly what you want. As I am usually flying with my friend and I am in the back. She won't fly in the back of a DC9. LOL. People understand honesty. So once I have secured the cabin. Closed the bins. Do the exit row interagation, I can do whatever for customer service. My friend and I that fly together often get passenges asking us if we are new. We are like what are you talking about? Meaning folks have a valid point about the lack of basic service. I always tell someone who ask me for anything. If I don't do it. I got side tracked. Just tell me again. I am getting old. They laugh and I usually, thank God, don't forget.

When flying Purser on International. Fortunatly for the most part you can still have one gopher on the aircraft to help you out with the extra's while every one else is scanning the passengers during boarding.

I think that certification will be great. As a passenger it should give you a more consistant experience on every flight, every airline. And as flight attendants there will be no more gray area. Between the company who employs you and what you are to do from an FAA point. Sometimes they getting a little off from each other. Any crew member on here knows what I mean. While I think that 90% or more of my collegues want to give you the best airline experience ever. We must now pay attention to activities more than ever. When we know that we can offer service..I am sure you will get the best they can offer.

Just my opinion.

Safe Flying All  Smile

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: PiedmontGirl
Posted 2003-12-16 15:07:44 and read 4643 times.

Aviaction:

And the following is just my very personal view on this topic: I am sure that passengers who actually feel safe and protected on board are less likely to panic, which increases their factual safety enormously.

This is absolutely correct.

I have always thought that it would be much easier to handle an actual emergency (evactuating the aircraft) with passengers whom the flight attendants had made friends with, so to speak, than trying to evacuate passengers who justifiably thought that they just flat didn't matter to anyone on the airplane.

Anytime I've had a medical emergency, the passengers were doing their best to be helpful to me. And why not. I was certainly being helpful to them.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: PiedmontGirl
Posted 2003-12-16 15:34:44 and read 4609 times.

Flyguyclt:

Ok, serious now. Unfortunatly the reason (in my opinion) that some flight attendants hide behind the SAFETY issue for their own lack of service tallent . They are just lazy. Period. So lets call them what they are and get over it .

This is true. It's nothing more than an excuse not to properly perform service. And people like that never run out of excuses. If those people were working in an office, they would just have another excuse for poor job performance.

When I would be up to my ears, I would tell people not to let me forget something -- I might have a senior moment and it might get away from me (beeeeg smile).

Often when I would be flying with my friends, passengers would ask us if we were new.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Brido
Posted 2003-12-16 15:46:48 and read 4589 times.

PiedmontGirl: I understand your comments perfectly re safety and service. Not sure though why you directed them at me. I couldn't agree more.

Always love your posts.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: PiedmontGirl
Posted 2003-12-16 15:59:14 and read 4548 times.

Brido:

PiedmontGirl: I understand your comments perfectly re safety and service. Not sure though why you directed them at me. I couldn't agree more.

Always love your posts.


Thank you ever so much.

I was simply responding as if I were speaking to you one to one -- as if you and I were in a room having a conversation. I rather thought that you and I would be in agreement. That's all.  Smile

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Flyguyclt
Posted 2003-12-16 19:39:44 and read 4453 times.

Much Thanks from all ! ! !


 Smile

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Aviaction
Posted 2003-12-16 19:48:21 and read 4429 times.

Greg
This indeed was an intriguing statement. What makes you think you could be flamed here? Simply because you have no respect for others?!? Be daring.

Respectful flying for all of us
Aviaction

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Greg
Posted 2003-12-16 19:54:51 and read 4410 times.

Aviaction.....
I respect myself...that's all I need.
I am not codependent on approval from other--and certainly not from an internet forum!
But thank you for your concern.
My statement was relative to my...well..rather unique opinions that are somewhat in the minority on this board.
Brgds.
 Smile

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Airlinebiznut
Posted 2003-12-16 20:34:03 and read 4361 times.

A certificate is a positive step if only to remind certain people that we can save their life even after being possibly disrespected at an earlier time in the flight. Usually a flight attendant's status rises significantly when they are placed in this position. Maybe this little piece of paper will give a push to those cabin crew members that have had their career attacked and maybe even their self esteem put to the test far too often.

Speaking of self esteem. "Some people" may find it much more pleasant to enjoy a healthy self image without making others miserable at the same time. You know who you are.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: PiedmontGirl
Posted 2003-12-16 20:50:58 and read 4327 times.

Airlinebiznut:

A certificate is a positive step if only to remind certain people that we can save their life even after being possibly disrespected at an earlier time in the flight. Usually a flight attendant's status rises significantly when they are placed in this position. Maybe this little piece of paper will give a push to those cabin crew members that have had their career attacked and maybe even their self esteem put to the test far too often.

What I've never understood about attacking a flight attendant's job is that when that job is attacked, the attacker is disparaging the person who he is going to spend more time with than anyone else with that airline. No one spends more time with the passengers than flight attendants. It is as if the person gets an ego boost by loudly and proudly proclaiming that the airline has hired a bunch of bums to take care of him between A and B. Huh?

Perhaps the status of flight attendants will rise with certification. I certainly hope so. I think we are about the last flight attendants on earth not to be certified.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Jafa
Posted 2003-12-16 20:54:45 and read 4318 times.

I think this is a very good thing. I have been through 3 FA initial training and have to say they have all been different. NWA was the most intensive of all of them, mostly because of all the aircraft types we had to learn. At the time it was the DC9-10,30,40,50; MD80; 727; 757-200 (two versions); A320; 747-100/200/400. To top it off the DC9's were being reconfigured and refurbished so we had to learn the differences between the old/new. Now the MD80,727,and 747-100 are gone.
I am glad this is happening. Now there will be one standard of training for all flight attendants.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: PiedmontGirl
Posted 2003-12-16 20:59:36 and read 4301 times.

Jafa:

Now there will be one standard of training for all flight attendants.

And won't that be a wonderful thing? It's about time.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Flyguyclt
Posted 2003-12-16 21:00:52 and read 4298 times.

Jafa:

Please tell us what J. A. F. A. stands for ?


 Smile

Safe Flying  Smile

PS. NWA here too.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Airlinebiznut
Posted 2003-12-16 21:15:30 and read 4257 times.

I would have loved to buddy-bid with PiedmontGirl and Flyguyclt. The passengers would love it too!

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Learjet25
Posted 2003-12-16 21:21:33 and read 4237 times.

yeah...now birng me a drink please.

Sorry...pretty rude, just popped into my head

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Flyguyclt
Posted 2003-12-16 21:22:55 and read 4231 times.

Airlinebiznut:

Thanks for the compliment. I love to have fun at work and know what is going on at all times on the airplane. Or at least try my best.

I am 100% behind this certification. I think a lot of the gray area will clear up. Everyone. Airline and FAA will be on the same page. Passengers will not get one who does the job and another who does not. Some flight attendants are still terrified to confront a passenger to turn off a cell phone. OMG What if they write a letter? Flying today, unfortunately has changed. And now more than ever before in the history of aviation. You need a competent, knowledgeable, yet friendly and approachable Flight Crew. Who is ready for anything.

Safe Flying  Smile

Doesn't Jafa have something to do with an Add?

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: PiedmontGirl
Posted 2003-12-16 21:43:30 and read 4205 times.

Airlinebiznut, thanks for the compliment. I think the three of us could have a whale of a good time flying together -- and the passengers would love it, too!  Smile

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Flyguyclt
Posted 2003-12-16 21:50:55 and read 4185 times.

LearJet25:

Shut up. Shit down and Keep your feet off the seats !

And get your own damn crew meal.

 Smile

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Learjet25
Posted 2003-12-16 22:24:50 and read 4138 times.

ok, I will. It's not that hard is it?  Smile

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: SWAFA30
Posted 2003-12-16 22:47:33 and read 4112 times.

Under this new legislation, will flight attendants have to undergo and pass annual medical exams like pilots? Will flight attendants be subject to mandatory retirement? Will the certification be voluntary or compulsory? In other words, as a certified flight attendant, how easy will it be for the federal government to take my job away???

[Edited 2003-12-16 22:50:24]

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: Jhooper
Posted 2003-12-17 00:34:25 and read 4048 times.

SWAFA30,

That's what I was kind of getting at earlier. The FAA wouldn't be considering certifying flight attendants unless they planned on making it mandatory. I foresee the F/A union, now that they've lobbied for this certification, spending much more time in court with the FAA fighting violations and suspensions of it's members. And guess what? When the FAA decides it wants to suspend your license, you can't work anyway! And then try getting a job with a violation on your record.

Not that I advocate people doing stuff that would lead to FAA violations, but I've seen the FAA violate many a good airman for trivial stuff.

Topic: RE: Flight Attendants In USA To Be Certified
Username: PiedmontGirl
Posted 2003-12-17 00:49:37 and read 4014 times.

SWAFA30:

Under this new legislation, will flight attendants have to undergo and pass annual medical exams like pilots? Will flight attendants be subject to mandatory retirement? Will the certification be voluntary or compulsory? In other words, as a certified flight attendant, how easy will it be for the federal government to take my job away???

How easy will it be for the feds to take your job? Very.

I also wonder about things like having to buy and maintain loss of certificate insurance, liability insurance, and the cost of those things. I really do.


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