Maintaining our competitive edge over outsourced work is a never-ending challenge and the ATD TWU RO Committee is the first line of defense in that struggle. Our goal is to secure TWU jobs by proactively dealing with departments such as Purchasing, Finance and Engineering to enhance the value of keeping work in-house while actively perusing new work through the Business Development Group.
The Business Development Group, known as the BDG, works directly with the shops to help identify opportunities for new work and insure all necessary organizations are involved to reduce the possibility for mistakes.
For more than 60 years, the TWU Air Transport Division has been addressing outsourcing concerns that affect its members. In a March 9, 1950 letter from C.R. Smith addresses this TWU concern on outsourcing by writing, “The contracting out of work has become an issue in our negotiations with the TWU because the Union believes this practice threatens the job security of its members”. Those concerns are more relevant today than any other time in aviation history, and the TWU ATD has been at the forefront of this issue since day one.
With today’s unprecedented global competition for aircraft maintenance work, outsourcing has destroyed thousands of highly skilled U.S. aviation jobs. According to an Associated Press article dated August 12, 2010, citing a Bureau of Transportation Report, “The industry has lost 54,000 jobs, or 16% of its work force, in the past two years”.
Even as airlines start to recover from the slump in air travel, these jobs will be slow to return due to the huge amount of offloading of maintenance work done by many carriers. With American Airlines’ decision to continue performing the majority of its maintenance work in-house, TWU has the responsibility of insuring our members’ skills and expertise are being utilized effectively, continuing the long, proud history of aircraft maintenance being preformed in-house with highly skilled unionized workers.
The TWU ATD RO Committee hosts weekly conference calls and attends base RO meetings with management. For more information on the RO committee please visit the RO Committee website.