Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Commenter "Anon" provides food for thought. In response to SecurityFirst he asks "what is a better alternative?" (to the SEIU?)

There may be several.

I'd like to hear from "Anon" or any other commenter what he or she would consider important in an alternative.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

What a waste!

Have you seen the latest bulletin from SEIU in the break rooms? We certainly hope you have. After all, our collective $500,000 to $600,000 a year is being put to good use.

The thing that caught our attention on this bulletin was the blurb about most of baggage paying only 1.2% in union dues versus most of checkpoint paying 1.8%. They have the gall to try and convince us that the reason baggage lost their 4/10s and weekends was because most of the baggage community only pays the 1.2%! Really?!

So the implication is that SEIU is intentionally punishing the baggage community because they only pay 1.2%. Something stinks about that implication. In other words, if you don't pay the 1.8%, you're nobody to SEIU. What a way to garner more support guys!

The reality is that Covenant Aviation Security can pretty much do whatever they want, regardless of what the union thinks. In fact, we're more and more convinced that the company uses SEIU as their little play thing. After all, where are SEIU's lawyers when Covenant Aviation Security violates the contract? What is the penalty to CAS when they are in violation? Where are those damn chairs for TDC and all the exits as the CBA requires?

The more pertinent question we should all be asking is what exactly are we getting for that $500,000 a year we all pay them?

And how can anyone take our union seriously when in that very bulletin, as well as others, they repeatedly make the simplest of grammatical errors. Sorry to be a grammar nazi, but when you are using the possessive adjective of "their" it's spelled just as we spelled it. "There" is an adverb. Completely different words. If you're going to try and pass yourself off as some professional entity, do a little proof reading before you send things out like that.

The time has come folks. And we all need to ask ourselves: Is SEIU in our best interest?

Overtime is back...

Well, at least for baggage it is. Sorry checkpoint folks. You'll have to wait a little longer for that to come back.

After reports of dozens of checked bags missing several flights, management finally realized that staffing is still not adequate for the checked baggage demands. This really doesn't come as much of a surprise since international flights aren't generally affected as much by seasonal demands. But hey, what the hell do we know?

For those of you that need the overtime, let's hope that it continues. Then again, we have a bunch of newbies starting in baggage next week. Make certain to give them a warm Covenant Aviation Security welcome.

Monday, September 27, 2010

This madness has to end now!

This madness has to end! The treatment that CAS has deemed fit to bestow on the employees proves beyond the shadow of a doubt that they are not concerned for our well being. We will leave no stone unturned as we continue our campaign to be treated as respected, appreciated, professional employees under the TSA umbrella.

The working conditions have been steadily getting worse with no end in sight.

Management keeps turning a blind eye and a deaf ear to our concerns and suggestions. We will not stand by and watch our fellow employees being mistreated and abused without attempting to bring these injustices to light. How long will TSA just stand by and do nothing?

Thanks much to all involved for your help

Thanks much to all of you who reviewed the RFP and followed up with suggestions and opinions.

After much discussion and debate we have decided to challenge Covenant's ability to be considered as part of the bidding group for SFO. It is our position that CAS is in non-compliance with Factor 1., sub-factor 1.2. Factor 1 is a Pass/Fail category and any failure with any factor in Factor 1 removes the contractor from the bidding group.

We are in the process of submitting our position and reasons for our conclusion to the CBO, GAO, Office of Inspector General, Ingrid.Pascall-Lopez@DHS.Gov, Akal Security.

We will also be contacting Meg Whitman and Sara Palin asking them to review the connection between SEIU, the largest union in California and the biggest contributor to Democratic State and Local officials, and SFO.

Good luck to us all!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Covenant Aviation Security in for more litigation

The NY law firm Fitapelli & Schaffer have filed a wrongful termination suit against Covenant Aviation Security claiming their client was terminated based on religious discrimination. Presumably this case involves a termination in their JFK security operations. Covenant Aviation Security runs the security for the AOA of JFK.

To be fair, large companies like this are always being sued. Whether or not this case has any merits, will be decided on a judge and or jury.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Iron Man speaketh

Gerardo Sanchez called a meeting with the baggage supervisors the other day.  Terence Cunningham was in attendance as well. A number of issues were discussed. And all reports have indicated that Sanchez was well behaved. Perhaps he's finally learned his lesson? Nah, not a chance. Just recently people witnessed him going on a tirade against someone in one of the bag rooms. So much for new beginnings.

You have to be curious. Why does management continue to keep this buffoon around? He's incompetent. He is a hot head. And my God, have you ever had to sit through one of his superfluous talks where he goes on and on with these mindless metaphors? Hopefully you haven't, because we've heard that can be highly mind numbing as well as just bizarre. He has certainly done enough over the years to warrant terminating him.

So why do they keep him around? Is it because he deals with baggage and all the other managers don't want to touch baggage? Who knows?

What we do know is that he is outright despised by many working in and around management. And we certainly know that the work force abhors the man. Then again, that latter part is a resume enhancer at Covenant Aviation Security.

TSA moving closer to unionization

It may seem curious as to why we all should be concerned about TSA becoming unionized. Well, if the way we have been represented is any indication, then it could only be a negative thing for the nation as a whole. After all, our motto here is Security First.

What is funny is when the president of the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU) Colleen Kelley states that, “Federal labor relations are set up so that the mission of every agency is of paramount importance.” Yeah, right!

When you couple things like TSA moving forward with unionizing and then TSA kowtowing to the ACLU in regards to the AIT equipment by changing the pictures an Officer sees to an avatar, you really have to wonder if TSA is truly serious about airport security.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Akal Security's Weak Point

Akal Security has a subsidiary Coastal International Security. One of Coastal's biggest revenue streams is from the Federal Protective Service. You may have heard about inspectors getting prohibited items past contract personnel at the Federal Protective Service. Might have been Coastal, may not have been, any identifying information was redacted on public reports.

Recently some Congressmen (led by Bennie Thompson, D-Mississippi) have been proposing a pilot program (where do they get these ideas?) to convert some contract personnel to federal employees. If the program gathers steam, up to 15,000 contract employees could go federal. Good for them. Yet how will Coastal respond to try to hold on to this business? Hopefully not with any backroom deals.

Now I'm sure if the employees had a choice they'd rather work directly for the Federal Protective Service (where they are likely to be recruited by the American Federation of Government Employees, major contributors to Bennie Thompson's re-election campaign). But isn't it interesting that the politicians are finding Akal's weak point at the same time Akal is chasing business at San Francisco International Airport?

Monday, September 20, 2010

Covenant Aviation Security Seeks Qualified Baggage Instructor

If you remember, a couple weeks ago we posted about a baggage instructor position being opened to all baggage certified people. Well, the deadline has come and gone and they have reposted the position.

One wonders why this is. Is it because, unlike TSA, this position is for no additional money? Or is it because we already have two extremely qualified people that perform these duties, once again, for no additional money? Or perhaps they didn't get the right candidate to apply?

The other odd thing about this posting is that it is opened to supervisors. The word on the street is that supervisors are apparently too expensive. So why is it opened to them? Then again, Leads were apparently too expensive to be doing recruiting and that hasn't stopped them from continuing to use Leads in that function.

But hey, if the rumors are true, none of this should be an issue at the beginning of the year when supervisors may once again be denied a raise. Don't worry, the precious management team at Covenant Aviation Security will take one for the team with the denial of a raise if it does happen.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

November 2 is Coming

The SEIU is the most famous contributor to Democratic campaigns after George Soros' non-profits. But we must be careful to distinguish between the SEIU and other unions. Other unions are close to many Democratic politicians, and may be useful to the TSO's cause in the future. SEIU's largest success in politics stems from the longtime support of Barack Obama by SEIU Local 1 in Chicago. So they have an inside track on some of President Obama's priorities, just like they used to have with Blagojevich in Illinois.

Heading into November, SEIU's political power is on a downtrend, in part because of the unpopular policies that Obama pushed and might benefit SEIU (Obamacare, stimulus, Michelle Obama's school lunch program). But that doesn't mean SEIU can't be useful this November. SEIU maintains a Committee on Political Education (COPE), which is built on voluntary contributions from their staff and members. And this committee can help defeat CAREER POLITICIAN DAN LUNGREN. LUNGREN is financially supported by GERRY BERRY, PRESIDENT of COVENANT AVIATION SECURITY LLC.

SEIU COPE will waste a lot of money this October and early November, but any money spent in support of Dr. Bera's campaign against two-time Congressman DAN LUNGREN is certainly welcome. They ponied up $5,000 in the primary, I say double down for the general.

Friday, September 17, 2010

September Madness

Once again we are getting a shining example of CAS management at their finest. The employee movements at both Checkpoint and Checked Baggage are in full swing. Available PTO slots for the month of September have vanished. Once again Operational needs outweigh our need to spend time with our families. Once again we are not suppose to have a life.

With the staffing levels so low we are asked once again to make up for the ineptitude of our wonderful management team. At what point will CAS admit to, what the rest of us already know, the fact that the people we have doing the job of scheduling need to be replaced? What has to happen for these realizations and revelations to hit them squarely over the head? Nothing has changed! These people are the new "Untouchables".

CAS will never admit that they made a mistake, so, let's just keep things the way that they are, maybe nobody will notice. Don't worry, we will gladly point out to you the deficiencies that we see in your managerial skills.

Get the staffing levels to the proper level. Live up to your contractual obligations that you have with TSA. Open up the overtime slots and stop trying to make it so we are all dog tired. We are reaching the breaking point.

When will TSA step in and do something about this!

BART Surcharge to Change

Sorry for reporting this so late, but for those of you that haven't been keeping up with the whole BART surcharge debacle, here is the latest. According to the SF Chronicle, BART is finally ready to reduce the airport surcharge from $4 to $1.50. The change is expected to take place in less than a month.

For those of you that are taking the shuttle from the Milbrae BART to the airport, that will of course end once this takes place.

Let's rant a little here. It is ridiculous that the airport and BART stick it to the very airport workers that run the place. Why is it that there's a surcharge for employees at all? Why can't they just end the surcharge all together for employees? BART will still continue to receive the standard fare. If they can find a way to reduce it to $1.50, they can find a way to eliminate the surcharge all together.

BART is another prime example of an inefficiently run government entity. They have continued to operate in the red for years with no immediate sign that they're going to ever get in to the black.

Couple this with the outrageous price of $225 a quarter for airport parking and you have the airport sticking it to the employees even more. Oakland charges approximately a third of what SFO charges their employees for parking.

SFO is notorious for their exorbitant prices. Remember, the out of whack landing fees at SFO is what caused Southwest Airlines to originally leave. One can only assume that Southwest worked out some kind of deal with the SFO bureaucracy in order for them to come back.

Meanwhile, worthless managers at Covenant Aviation Security, continue to get company paid parking privileges at domestic garages. One can only guess how much Covenant Aviation Security has to shell out for each of those parking passes.

Bottom line, BART is a crappy deal with or without the airport surcharge.

About Akal Security and Bureaucrats

The federal government has a website which tracks federal spending. Akal might not have the exact match experience of the chest-thumping Category X champion Covenant Aviation Security LLC. But Akal is not small. Usaspending lists contract awards to Akal Security in the amount of $238.7 million for fiscal year 2010 (the government's year ends September 30, so this is about one year's worth of contracts). This means Akal Security has a lot of work at military bases, federal buildings and courthouses, government owned research facilites or plants, etc.

In comparison, Covenant pulls in about $80 million a year a SFO. The other Covenant company - currently Covenant Security Services - is kind of sputtering but to be generous let's says Covenant has in total $100 million a year in federal work.

What's notable to me is Akal sometimes comes out on top when there are 20 bidders. Not one bidder. Not two bidders. A lot of competition. And the federal bureaucrats choose Akal. I expect they can play up their strengths and play down their weaknesses. Covenant, on the other hand, may not be as skilled in proposal writing: if they were, why isn't the other Covenant company winning contracts when Akal is the competition?

For what it's worth. If the government is inclined to pick Covenant Aviation Security, they may take eight months to work out their reasoning. Mostly, in my opinion, because Akal could protest the award if the reasoning is not sound. A bureaucrat's gotta do what a bureaucrat's got to do after all.

Checkpoint Lead Interviews have begun

For those of you that applied for the Checkpoint Lead position, we here at Security First @ SFO wish you all the very best. Let's just hope that they make a similarly wise choice for this position as they did with the recent Checked Baggage STSO position.

To those DFOs that were flat out denied an interview because you either made the mistake of going Dual Function or were drafted against your will in to the classification, we can only off our deepest empathy. It's a hard road to follow, but just remember that our CTX brethren were denied virtually any promotion for the last three years.

This current regime won't last. And then things will change, and then they'll change back to the way they were. The more things change, the more they stay the same. So just wait it out. Perhaps in due time, you will become loved again.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The results are in

Well, by now most of you have heard about who has been promoted to CTX STSO. And we must say that we're pleasantly shocked by Covenant Aviation Security's decision. This was very un-CAS like. Hopefully the three people will serve themselves and the responsibility of their new position well now and in the future.

For those that missed out and were passed up, keep your chins up! There will be more opportunities. And just remember that we're still in this together. In the mean time, we're still waiting to hear about the PAX STSO promotions. Yes, there have been some names mentioned, but nothing definitive just yet.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Dan Lundgren, Career Politician

It's important to have information in our democracy, or so I'm told. Here's some information that I found that is so crazy - nah, it's about politics as usual, but the kind of stuff the Tea Partiers get fired up about:

He used to be Attorney General in California. He's Dan Lundgren, Republican. He's a Congressman now (or, again, it's his second time). He sits on an Aviation Subcommittee. He gets things done. Also, he gets campaign contributions from FirstLine Transportation Security's political action committee, and from Covenant Aviation Security LLC's CEO Gerry Berry.

Remember that name, Dan Lundgren. What party? Republican. Status? Incumbent, career politician. Contributors? Screening Partnership Program contractors. Politics? As usual. Tea Partiers? Time will tell, time will tell..

Monday, September 13, 2010

Copy and Post

The following information was presented to Carly Fiorina and the Republican National Committee Chairman. Feel free to copy and post this information to any and all TSA related blog-sites that you wish.

There appears to be a political connection between SEIU and the Democratic state and local politicians.

There is a private company responsible for the security of the American public at SFO. This is part of the TSA "Screening Partnership Program" , or better known as "SPP." This contract between TSA and this private company is rather interesting. In the middle of all this is SEIU who represents the employees of this private company. (This began as a "pilot" program with a life expectancy of 3 years and is now completing 8 years.) One of the biggest questions one has to ask is, "how is the security for the sixth largest airport in the country controlled by a private company?" SFO has International flights and is one of the busiest airports in the country. Why is TSA allowing an airport of this size to be privatized? There is no other airport in the country the size of SFO under the control of a SPP contractor. We believe that SEIU and its political connections are behind all this.

A recent news article in the San Francisco Chronicle mentioned that in 2008 SEIU contributed 30 million dollars to California State and local Democratic officials. Just wait until the numbers for 2010 are revealed!

Money on a String

As reported on this blog, the private contractors in the Pilot Program, now within the Screening Partnership Program, once were found to be a mere 17% more expensive than their federal counterparts. If this were the end of the story, probably the Screening Partnership Program would be done and buried since the TSA is required to keep costs similar between fed and private operations.

At least one contractor pushed back on this report, wanting to avoid a Career Decision Day. This contractor argued that the taxes paid by the contractor is money that comes back to the government, so this amount is not an actual expense to the government.

But folks, that would be a rebate. The difference is taxes are made to be avoided. One year you might be taxed, it might tick you off, and you might find a way to lower your tax obligation the next year. There is no guarantee the taxes will be paid consistently.

Sadly, though, it looks like the government bought the argument to some degree. And this bought the contractors time until TSA could raise wages enough for the contractor at SFO, Covenant Aviation Security, to undercut TSA's wages for experienced personnel in comparison. The next time they run the numbers private might come out even. Well played, ladies and gentlemen. You're "innovative" private sectors ideas haven't benefitted the public but you didn't lose the deal.

During this period, Covenant can be identified in one very public way. They've hired lobbyists to speak to Congresspersons and to speak to the General Accounting Office (source:, listed as 'Covenant'). By law the lobbyists are required to file reports. They've been paying $15,000 a quarter for the past several years. They are using the same lobbyists (Smith Dawson Andrews) as San Francisco International Airport, maybe to save on cab fair or something.

It looks like hokey accounting must be in the mix when you talk about the Screening Partnership Program. First, note that Covenant Aviation Security has hired lobbyists. Next, note that experienced TSO's are better off federal. Finally, note that if someone is being paid to counter-balance this, why is that group doing nothing?

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Where should we be in pay?

We know there has been some confusion lately on some of our posts in terms of pay bands, TSA, money, etc. Let's try to clear some of this up.

TSA has a system called PASS (Performance Accountability and Standards System). This system is basically an incentive system. TSOs, LTSOs, and STSOs are graded on various metrics. Some of those include how well you scored on PSEs, IMAs, OMAs, OLC completion rate, quarterly reviews (yeah, when was the last time we had one of those?), et. al. How you score and are graded on those things determine your bonus and raise.

You can also get bigger raises by taking on additional duties, called collateral duties. Those duties can include being an OJT monitor, an instructor, being responsible for calibrating and general maintenance of various equipment.

There is some controversy within the TSA work force over PASS. People feel it can be unfair to have your raise determined by how well you do on a PSE. How many of us have had brain farts on it and failed? If you have a brain fart at that crucial moment, your raise can be lower. Hence, the reason many within TSA are arguing to become unionized. Many feel that the PASS system is an unfair system.

Keep in mind, TSA at the minimum, receives their COLA (Cost of Living Adjustment) regardless. Most of the time that COLA is 3.9%. What has our raises been???

Ok, so let's get into numbers. A TSO starts at Pay Band D. The minimum that a starting TSO will make is $25,518 plus 35.15% locality rate for the Bay Area. That comes out to $34,487.58 as a minimum. A TSO at the D Band will max out at $38,277 with the locality pay of $51,731.37.  These are the base rates. They do not include the various incentives one can receive within TSA.

The above rates work out to approximately $16.58 per hour up to $24.87 an hour. These are for TSOs at the D band. LTSOs will generally start out at F band and STSOs will start out at G band. If you want to check out these numbers, go to TSA's page listing all the pay rates for the various pay bands. And remember when you are factoring the hourly rates for the various bands, to add the 35.15% locality pay.

Now there are some caveats. TSA rarely hires full time employees off the street. You will generally have to put in some time, as much as two years before you can even go full time.

Speaking of two years, their probation period lasts for two years. Unlike our four month probation period, they have a much longer time on probation. However, they don't enforce their attendance policies with the same vengeance that Covenant Aviation Security does. To be fair, the Federal Government gives Covenant Aviation Security more money if attendance is high. So it's in Covenant Aviation Security's financial interest to ensure we all show up to work.

TSA also has to pay for a certain percentage of their health and dental coverage. Unlike us, where we get free Kaiser (and a damn good Kaiser plan) for ourselves and a partner, they have to pay. This is not unlike most companies. We admittedly do have it good in terms of our benefits. Except for the fact that TSA has their Federal pension plans. When is ours kicking in?

Now you all have a general idea of what is what. The GAO (Government Accounting Office) concluded that SPP airports such as SFO cost 17.4% more than their federal counterparts. That GAO report is very interesting and worth giving a read.

Under our CBA, the workers that benefit the most from it are new people. They would make less under TSA. For those of us that have put in three, four, five, or more years, we're losing out. Plain and simple. So why is this? Who exactly does this CBA benefit? SEIU, Covenant Aviation Security, TSA, or us?

According to the ATSA (Aviation Transportation Security Act), we're supposed to be paid the same or more than our federal counterparts.  So why aren't we? Well, it could very well be because of our CBA. A legal loophole for Covenant Aviation Security not to pay us the equivalent.

It's time to decide guys. Which way are you going to vote in terms of our representation? What exactly do we get for the $500,000 approximately a year that goes to SEIU?

Let us not forget

As we know, nine years ago today, several despicable human beings AKA terrorists, decided to hijack four U.S. airplanes and crash them into strategic targets. Nine years seems like a long time ago to most of us. But if you're like us, you remember that day vividly. Those terrorists killed 3,000 of our brothers and sisters. We must not forget that!

Subsequently, the Department of Homeland Security was created and ultimately the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). Many of us took up the call when the initial roll out took place. Many of us are still there. While the job can suck, and we are often taken for granted by our superiors and the general public, it's important always to keep in mind that we are there to try and stop the next plane from being used as a weapon and to protect those flying on a daily basis.

As many of us begin our work day today, just remember that there are those of us who do appreciate what you do and know the job can be tough at times. Let those of us that care and support you lift you up.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Letter from a friend

We hope that we have created an environment here on the web that makes the rest of you feel comfortable to participate and contribute. Whether it's on Facebook, the comments section here, or just sending us a note.

Below, we have posted a note sent to us a little while back from a mutual friend. This individual states their reasons for wanting to go federal. If you agree, great. If not, great. Let your voice be heard. Comment below, or if you're a friend of ours on Facebook, comment there.

We will from time to time gladly post letters and notes from you here, so long as you use good grammar and no profanity.

And remember, you can always contact us anonymously via our Contact Info. page.


Thursday, September 9, 2010

Do you meet this job description?

This link will lead to a TSA website page that will describe a "Full Performance" TSO . If you can meet the requirements outlined you would fall into Pay Band "E". The pay scale for Pay Band "E" has previously been provided to you on this website. Don't forget to include the "locality" pay differential of 35.15%.

Just how many of us fall under this job description? How far behind in salary should we be compared to our TSA counterparts?

Now that you know the facts, what are you going to do about it?

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


I recently posted about petitions. I realize now maybe I should take a step back.

There are petitions and then there are petitions. There are online petitions, people power petitions, workplace petitions, people lurking around Safeway that are pushing ballot referendums petitions and then things that lawyers draw up such as a "petition for writ of certiorari".

Many of these non-ballot referundum or non-lawyerly petitions have no legal power, of course.
But there is a petition that employees can sign that does have standing. It's commonly known as a deauthorization petition. It sets up an election to choose whether to remove the requirement in the CBA to pay dues or fees just to keep your job. It's in the National Labor Relations Act, Section 9(e). 30% of bargaining-unit employees must sign this petition to move to the next stage: a secret-ballot election monitored by the federal government.

So if you are approached by a person with a petition, and he or she is being careful that it is a non-work area on non-work time (to avoid any charges of unlawful employer support), and they start talking about dues, they just might be talking about a legally-sanctioned procedure to remove the dues requirement. When the petition is turned in to the federal government, they will not push it back in the petitioners face like the "my (boy)friend is a popular supervisor and you changed his schedule" petition at Covenant Aviation Security. It will be processed and checked for compliance.

Then the real work begins. If the petition is approved and moves to the election stage, 50%+1 of the bargaining unit must vote "Yes" for the petitioner to win. So, hypothetically, if there are 900 eligible voters, 451 must vote "Yes" to effectively end the dues requirement. Any ballots not returned, or not cast, obviously don't help the petitioner.

30%, 50%+1. These numbers may be more important to TSO's than 40/40/I forgot.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

The Envelope, Please!

The announcement on promotions, we have been told, will be either Wednesday or Thursday. Will it once again be business as usual? Or, will CAS show us that things have indeed changed? The decisions, no doubt, will be controversial. To those, that have been selected, of course they will feel that the right choice has been made. To those that have been once again denied promotion it will seem like "business as usual."

The holiday weekend has made the wait for the letter of rejection much more difficult. An extra day can be down right unbearable for those that are holding out hope.

We wish those of you that applied the very best of luck.

John Pistole drops by SFO

John Pistole, the newly appointed head of TSA, is making an appearance today at SFO. Perhaps we should all tell him that John Gage, the head of AFGE, has it all wrong when he stated that workers at SFO were content simply because we are covered by a union contract.

Or maybe we should let him know that his predecessor's supposed legacy of the Checkpoint Evolution program is not only not being used, but is actually being discouraged by Covenant Aviation Security management.

There are a whole host of things we could talk to him about. Will he be a typical bureaucrat or someone who wants to improve things? We're going to go with the former.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Happy Labor Day!

We hope that everyone is enjoying today. For those of you not working today, enjoy the beautiful day today. And for those of you that are working, enjoy the 8 hours of double time and a half. In these tough economic times, days like today are most welcomed.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Another week of silence

Well, the end of the week has come and gone. There is still no announcement of CTX or PAX STSO promotions. There's no word either on if or when PAX Lead interviews starting.

The cynical side of us says they're just biding their time so Barbara Alvarenga can promote her cronies as she did when she was first here. Then again, perhaps they're really having a difficult time choosing the "right" candidates. Or maybe they'll cancel the promotions like they did with the Dual Function STSO promotions in January.

One thing's for certain: no one has received a rejection letter yet. So keep the hope alive!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Why Does the CBA Go Three Years?

Ever wondered why the SEIU Local ???? (790?)(1877?)(USWW?)/Covenant collective bargaining agreements are effective for three years? So if everything goes to hell from Octobr 1 in year two and on into year three when the TSA rolls out a "bridge contract", can anything be done? Why is that?

It's because workers have rights!

Say what? It's all about the timing to vote OUT the union, or bring in a different representative.
It's about the union containing your ability to remove them.

Here are some guidelines to follow. For specifics, or exceptions, an attorney consultation may be useful.

Contract of less than three years in duration: stability in labor-management relations overrides employee free choice of representative. There will be a window period toward the end of the contract during which a petition to remove or replace the current union can be filed.

Contracts longer than three years - may have a window period during year three, and a petition can be filed at any time in year four and onward; here employee free choice trumps stability in labor management relations. Many unions avoid contracts longer than three years for this reason.

The practical effect of these "rights" is that employers will recognize that unions want contracts to be two years eleven months and 31 days in length. They will then try to extract concessions from the union in exchange for their preferred contract length.

Now at SFO, they try to make us believe contract length was the last thing hammered out. Yet, they always end up the same length. Draw your own conclusions.

See, you've got rights! You might not survive the toil to exercise them, but trust me, they're there.

Next time - what's that other petition?

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Can I have a pair of diamond ear rings with that bracelet?

What's a manager to do with too much time on their hands? Some would go to the SCC and randomly pick checkpoints to see if they can find anyone doing anything they shouldn't be doing. Others may choose to play Hearts or Spades or surf the net. Perhaps they would just make a run to the Tanforan mall to pick up a new pair of shoes.

Well, that's the dilemma that faces Dena Crawford on a daily basis. Since she has so little to do, after all, there are only four managers in the training department, she has decided to start a home business. Oh wait, not a home business, but a home business ran at work.

Crawford openly solicits people whenever they go to the training lab to buy jewelry. If that isn't enough she's using trainers in the lab to help her. How, you might ask? She is having trainers run down to the checkpoint to tap people out specifically so they can go to the lab to complete a transaction.

How is it that Ryan Yee has been allowing this to happen all this time? Why does he continue to protect the ineptitude of this manager? Mindy Pengel might be wise to have IT pull Crawford's email records to see if she's using company email to help run the business as well. Hell, if Crawford has the cojones to send trainers to do her work, then it wouldn't be any surprise that she's using company email. After all, her buddy Yee will protect her to the death.

Must we state the obvious? Ok, we will! This manager is making anywhere from $75K to 90K a year. She gets parking privileges at Terminal 3, just like all the other managers. She has a cushy job that rarely does she ever have to work past 6PM. Yet she can't find enough in her day to fill the hours? How about creating some adequate training initiatives for the work force? Let us not forget as well, that indirectly, she is being paid by all of our tax dollars! We're PAYING her to run her own business while she's on the public dollar. If she is that incapable of finding 8 or 9 hours of productive work to do in a day, then we think it's time that she be terminated. Because, it's obvious that her position is not needed.

One last thing

We just got confirmation that the new hire CTX TSOs will in fact be part time. They will be utilized to fill in the gaps as we previously reported. The bad thing about this is that this will not help the full time CTX TSOs in terms of schedule selection, but it will help for the work load.

There will also be opportunities for full time CTX and DFOs to go part time once the part timers have been hired. This coincides with the recent CAS Infos offering people the opportunity to go part time. This is a 180 from not that long ago when no one could change their full time status.

And as Donnie Filbert has been heard saying about DFOs, "we have filled our quota". This confirms it. So much for Filbert being completely behind the DFO program.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

One more thing

Today there is a posting for an ATI (Assistant Training Instructor) for Checked Baggage. It is open to all baggage certified Officers, including DFOs, TSOs, LTSOs, and STSOs. The deadline is September 9.

The job posting states that the ATI "will provide new hire training for baggage [officers] on an as needed basis.".

This gives even more credence to the word that they will be hiring baggage only TSOs. Note that it states "new hire training" and not crossover training.

Couple news items

We're getting word that the announcement for CTX STSO is happening this week. We guess they were waiting for Gerardo Sanchez to come back from his sabbatical. We haven't heard anything definitive about the PAX STSO promotions yet. Perhaps they're getting ready to announce that as well.

And it seems as though DFOs are in fact DOA. The word around town is that DFOs are officially capped out and that the prospect of hiring CTX TSOs is an ultimate reality.

It seems that Covenant Aviation Security has forced themselves to do this since staffing is at a precarious level in the bag rooms and over time doesn't seem to be covering the gaps. This holds true with the recent announcement that 9000 Specialists are once again allowed to do over time, but only if DFOs or CTX TSOs do not take that over time slot.

Sanchez has also been spotted in bag rooms doing work there instead of in his office in the BSR. Perhaps he's avoiding those folks due to the recent HR investigation?

No word yet on the Checkpoint Lead interviews either. We'll keep you abreast of the situation as we hear more.

There goes your raise!

If that unsubstantiated rumor is true what will happen to the greed factor? What will happen to the profit margin and the 1.2%-1.8% annual raise for the workforce? ( 3% minus the union cut of 1.2% or 1.8% leaving us with peanuts.) What will happen to the Employee Appreciation Day? What will happen to the annual Thanksgiving/Christmas Day all in one dinner? Will we ever see another hot dog, mashed potatoes, gravy, salad, bag of chips, soda again?

Is there a new reality? This, this cannot be true! Reasonable thinking and concern for the workforce; somebody pinch me! This must be a good dream!

Several hundred TSOs to be hired

One of the unsubstantiated rumors supposedly coming from TSA is that there will be several hundred TSOs hired in the coming months. This is in anticipation of Terminal 2's opening on April 14, 2011. God knows, these new TSOs would be welcomed because of our constant under staffing.  However, we find it hard to believe that Covenant Aviation Security will be able to meet this demand and frankly, it's not really Ryan Yee's, the Director of Training, style. He tends to wait till the last minute to get anything done.

We shall see...