Demand and Requests
Demand for Solution to the Dispute
United Airlines declared on February 4, 2016 the closure of the Narita Base of the former/premerger Continental Micronesia, and dismissed the union members of the Narita Base on May 31, 2016.
Currently we the four union members are in struggle for your withdrawal of the dismissal and for your reinstatement of us to the former positions at the Tokyo District Court and the Tokyo Metropolitan Labor Commission.
United Airlines has set up 1) Poor financial situation of the Japan routes, 2) Need of additional cost of US$700,000 if rehiring the dismissed, and 3) Labor is in surplus, as reasons of the dismissal.
However, the labor became surplus because United Airlines has taken up the Guam-Narita line of Continental Micronesia, which we worked for as flight attendants, and given it to the Narita base of the former/premerger United Airlines, as a temporary measure before United Airlines and AFA reach the Agreement contract to complete the treatments for the merger. At any basis though labor may be in surplus, even a lay-off was not implemented, but only we the Narita-base union members were dismissed by the reasons as noted above. In the Agreement between United Airlines and AFA signed three months after our dismissal says basically that any flight attendants who do not belong to AFA shall not be on board the flights. We are aware of the fact that United Airlines dismissed us, who were not members of AFA, due to its discrimination against the labor union which we belong to and by nationality discrimination.
In October 2018 all flight attendants of United Airlines, Continental Airlines and Micronesia Airlines work on board together without differentiations. The Guam-Narita line, on which we worked, will return with larger aircrafts to the Guam base of former Continental Micronesia. We demand that we should get back to the former positions as flight attendants as soon as possible.
Now the racial discrimination against Japanese and the discrimination by labor unions are getting clearer, and the court trials are watched carefully by the mass people in Japan. The company will be able to regain the valued status by giving a solution to this labor dispute. We hope from bottom of heart that the honor of United Airlines would be maintained. We wish that Mr. Oscar Munos and Mr. Scott Kirby would make the decision for it as soon as possible.
Here are our six items of demand:
1.Withdraw the unfair dismissal,
2.Get the dismissed back to flight attendants and provide stable workplaces,
3.Admit that it was a dismissal for dismantling the labor union, and apologize,
4.Pay the unpaid wages and compensation for its deferred payment
5.Compensation for the mental, physical and economical pains to us due to the dismissal, and
6.Recognize All Workers Union/RENRO of National Union of General Workers and hold collective bargaining, which is being under examination of the Tokyo Metropolitan Labor Commission, as a case of employer’s rejection of collective bargaining.
We shall not give up until we get back to the former positions. We look forward to receiving your responses.
Request on the Total Solution to the Dismissal Issue of United Airlines to The American Chamber of Commerce in Japan
Gentlemen: United Airlines, Inc. has been registered as a Corporate Sustaining Member of the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan (The ACCJ). The ACCJ, which is comprised of more than 1,000 members in 40 countries, mainly in the United States, is supporting further development of economic relations between Japan and the United States and American companies. In order to strengthen the international business environment in Japan, United Airlines, Inc. is reported to have a close partnership with the ACCJ.
Unite Airlines, Inc., which operates the airline business to and from Japan, has enforced to dismiss four flight attendants, who are members of the FA United Local of All Workers Union/ZENRO, National Union of General Workers, affiliated with National Council of Trade Unions/Zenrokyo, without justifiable reasons, on May 31, 2016, and has been jeopardizing their right of labor and the right of living.
The dismissed workers filed a lawsuit for confirmation of position for continued employment at the Tokyo District Court on April 25, 2016, against United Airlines. It is already about two and a half years since then. Its examination of witnesses has been completed in August and a court judgment is planned to be given early 2019.
All of us four employees became flight attendants of Continental Airlines (CO) during 1980’s thru early 1980’s. Later on in April 1993, we were transferred to its subsidiary Continental Micronesia (CMI), which has operated the Guam-Narita route and the domestic routes, and have worked as flight attendants since then.
CO has held the Narita Base with Japanese-national flight attendants and the Guam Base with US-national flight attendants. In order to cope with the merger between Northwest Airlines and Delta Airlines, CO announced in 2008 its integration of management with United Airlines. In April, 2013 CO merged United Airlines, and changed the trade name of the merged company to United Airlines. After the announcement aircrafts of pre-merged United Airlines were introduced to the Narita-Guam route. The aircrafts were told to have on board only the flight attendants of United Airlines and the flight hours of the four union members were reduced and the wage was reduced.
Our labor union has negotiated with the company (CMI) for improvement. On February 4, 2016, CMI announced the closure of Narita Base and offered to us early retirement or transfer to Rump Service and Customer Service at Narita. We did not accept the conversion. On May 31, 2016 CMI dismissed only the Japanese flight attendants, who were members of our Japanese labor union.
United Airlines are organized by AFA the US flight attendants union, and an agreement has been signed which stipulates that any foreign-national flight attendants who do not belong to AFA shall not be on board the flights. In April 2017, United Airlines announced the merger with CMI, and the employment of all of its flight attendants of the world was secured, except the four Japanese flight attendants. It was a dismissal of us Japanese labor union members and nothing but discrimination against Japanese labor union and the nationality. It was an abuse of the right of dismissal, which is invalid. It is vitally necessary for a leading airline company, United Airlines must solve the issue on its own to take the corporate social responsibility, abiding by the Japanese Labor Standards Law.
We would sincerely request the ACCJ to lead its Member company United Airlines to give a total solution to this labor dispute on its own as soon as possible irrespective of the Tokyo District Court decision to be made early 2019.
Thus we would like to request you to set up a meeting with us. We will contact you separately to discuss the date of meeting etc.