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Is Uncle Worse Than Sh**inga?

GlorifiedCabbie

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Flexjet Pilots Sue Luxury Jet Airline For Union Busting




April 27, 2015
Lawsuit Seeks Emergency Relief From Court

Press Contact

(CLEVELAND) - A group of jet pilots filed a lawsuit Friday against airline Flexjet, LLC and OneSky, its Cleveland-based parent company, claiming they were illegally harassed and terminated for speaking out in favor of unionization and better working conditions. Flexjet, LLC employs over 350 pilots who operate luxury business jets for wealthy customers. The pilots are seeking representation from the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Airline Division, which represents over 80,000 workers in the aviation industry.



?Flexjet and OneSky terminated these hard-working pilots because they exercised their rights to encourage coworkers to support unionization,? Teamsters Airline Division International Representative Capt. Frederick C. Dubinsky said. ?It is a blatant case of anti-union discrimination. The reasons management gave for firing these pilots are not only false, they?re bizarre and should be of grave concern to pilots and their passengers.?
All three of the fired pilots in the suit had spotless employment records and had previously publicly identified themselves as union supporters.
According to the lawsuit filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio on Friday, senior managers told several pilots they were fired because they were ?unhappy? and the carrier would not tolerate unhappy employees. When the pilots said they were not unhappy, they were stripped of their employee identification badges and told to resign in 24 hours or be terminated.
Another pro-union pilot was terminated for ?insubordination? because he refused to speak about union issues on the telephone with Flexjet Chairman Kenn Ricci. Ricci had also demanded that the terminated pilots debate him about unions in a public forum without any union representatives present.
In a series of letters, Ricci has repeatedly chastised the pilots for exercising their federal right to refrain from discussion unionization directly with him ? the Chairman of the Board. This is not the first time Ricci has allegedly unlawfully fired union supporters in an effort to crush union activity. In the early 2000s he fired a number of Travel Air pilot union organizers for anti-union reasons and was similarly embroiled in a federal lawsuit for years, which the company settled out of court.
?Every worker should be able to trust that ownership and management will adhere to basic standards of fair play and consistency,? said Airline Division Director Capt. David Bourne. ?Flexjet and OneSky?s decision to terminate these pilots for false and unlawful reasons introduces a level of uncertainty and arbitrariness into the workplace to which no one should be subjected.?
Many Flexjet pilots are providing financial assistance to their terminated co-workers and their families.
The lawsuit claims the carrier and its parent company committed multiple violations of the Railway Labor Act, the federal law that governs labor relations in the airline and railroad industries, and Ohio state law. The pilots are seeking immediate re-instatement, back pay, attorneys? fees, a preliminary and permanent injunction prohibiting further interference with pilots? right to unionize, and other relief. The lawsuit also alleges that Flexjet forced all pilots to sign ?Yellow Dog? contracts, which terminate their employment agreements if they become represented by a union. Such ?Yellow Dog? contracts have been unlawful in the United States since 1932.
?The Flexjet pilots and the Teamsters are united like never before, and we aren?t backing down. Our campaign for unionization has also become a fight to protect the operation from an ownership and management group that has lost its focus on stable operations,? Capt. Bourne said.
Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico including more than 80,000 workers throughout the airline industry in every craft and class.
 
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GlorifiedCabbie

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Sounds like Uncle is having trouble keeping his stories straight. Last time he took hostages, he claimed it was Sh**Inga's fault.
 

flexible

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Can someone please give a quick run down of sheringa and tyler? They were mentioned on the vuh but I have no idea what anyone's talking about.
 

GlorifiedCabbie

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Where to start on that one? Tyler was basically the mouthpiece for Ford&Harrison.
Sh**finger worked for USAir and basically pushed whipsawing for their regionals. During that same time the USAir pilots took a haircut on their pensions. He got mugged in the employee parking lot and one of the pilots had to do time.

Sh**finger introduced himself as the new CEO at Options by saying how he remembered watching airplanes at the local airport. A more accurate description would characterize him as a pilot hater. He didn't understand the fractional business. He tried to treat our product as a commodity not as a service. Everyone suffered and he almost bankrupted us.
 

GlorifiedCabbie

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Uncle is at it again at Flex. He has used RH to identify the pilots that are willing to stand up to him and speak the truth. I lost count of how many pilots were terminated this time, but he was involved with the terminations several years ago with the Options RIF. If anyone can help me find an old email connenting Uncle to the RIF, please pm me. I can't seem to find a copy. As to the Flex pilot I met several days ago, I will do my research. I will try to back up my point with facts, not on guesswork by a second hand party. Fly Safe GC
 

luckydog

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As to the Flex pilot I met several days ago, I will do my research. I will try to back up my point with facts, not on guesswork by a second hand party. Fly Safe GC

If that guy's name is JF, I've met the guy. He's big on saying prove a statement but has no problem assuming what Kenn's plans are given FJ history with BBD.
 

GlorifiedCabbie

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lucky, I can't recall his name but he hit me with the talking points about how Kenn is going to improve FJ. I asked how he knew and he couldn't give me a straight answer. My rebuttal was simply, you know about as much about Kenn's history at Options as PD knows about the history of FJ.
 

GlorifiedCabbie

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KENN KNEW OF PILOTS UNION ORGANZING EFFORTS
AT FLIGHT OPTIONS IN 2002

Kenn Ricci and his team have repeatedly argued that the pilot union organizing movement at Flight Options did not begin until after his departure in 2003. But, the following excerpts tell the real story:

Transcript of the Testimony of


Robert Sullivan

Date: July 7, 2003



Case: Thomas Bowden, et al. v. Flight Options, L.L.C.

Deposition of ROBERT SULLIVAN, taken as

if upon cross-examination before Julieanne Ross,

a Registered Professional Reporter and Notary

Public within and for the State of Ohio, at the .

offices of Gallagher, Sharp, Fulton and Norman, .

1501 Euclid Avenue, Seventh Floor Bulkley

Building, Cleveland, Ohio, at 10:15 o'clock a.m.

on Monday, July 7th, 2003, pursuant to notice

and/or agreement of counsel, on behalf of the

Plaintiffs in this cause.
Q. Did Mr. Ricci make any statements to you regarding a union organizing campaign RTA?
A. No.
Q. Did he make any statements to you regarding union organizing, period, in terms of organizing the Flight Options employees?
A. Ever?
Q. Ever.
A. Yes.
Q. When was that?
A. In the summer of 2002, I believe.
Q. What did he say?
A. He felt that it would be appropriate in our next manager’s meeting to go over the do’s and don’ts regarding our behavior and our actions in response to any type of union organization drive. In particular we went over TIPS.
Q. What do you mean TIPS?
A. TIPS is an acronym used in response to a union organizing drive, things that you are not allowed to do, which are threats that you are not allowed to do, interrogation – I’m not sure what the P stands for, but S is surveillance. Promises.
Q. Why did that come up in the summer of ’02, why did the issue of union organizing come up?
A. I believe he had received responses to weekly messages from pilots indicating that there was some discussions out on the road.
Q. About union organizing?
A. Yes.
 

pilotyip

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This guy deserves the worst union he can get.
 

GlorifiedCabbie

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1 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
2 FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF OHIO
3 EASTERN DIVISION
4 THOMAS BOWDEN, WILLIAM BRUNET,
5 THOMAS JETER, WILLIAM TUMLIN,
6 and DAVID YEAGER,
7 Plaintiffs,
8 vs. Case No.
9 FLIGHT OPTIONS, L.L.C., 02-CV-1768
10 Defendant. Judge Nugent
11 - - - - -
12 Deposition of KENNETH C. RICCI, taken as if
13 upon cross-examination before Lynn A. Konitsky,
14 a Certified Realtime Reporter and Notary Public
15 within and for the State of Ohio, at the offices
16 of Gallagher, Sharp, Fulton and Norman, 1501
17 Euclid Avenue, Seventh Floor Bulkley Building,
18 Cleveland, Ohio, at 10:10 a.m. on Tuesday,
19 September 9, 2003, pursuant to notice and/or
20 agreement of counsel, on behalf of the Plaintiffs
21 in this cause.




3 Q. What about Mr. Brunet, do you recall him from
4 indoc?
5 A. Uhm-hum, yes, I do.
6 Q. What do you recall -- did you speak with
7 Mr. Brunet in the indoc?
8 A. Probably.
9 Q. Do you have a specific recollection of speaking
10 to him?
11 A. I don't have a specific recollection of what he
12 asked or didn't ask at indoc.
13 Q. What do you recall about Mr. Brunet in indoc?
14 A. Body language.
15 Q. What body language?
16 A. Well, it's body language because it's hard to
17 describe, but I think after doing as many indoc
18 classes as I've done and, you know, clearly they
19 number in the hundreds, I would often -- you
20 could often tell, from looking at someone,
21 whether they were engaged, whether they were a
22 doubting Thomas, you know, or whether they were
23 still trying to decide what they really believed.
24 Mr. Brunet was one of those people that you
25 could just tell from his body language, didn't
1 believe anything that was being said.
2 Q. And how did you respond to your interpretation of
3 his body language?
4 A. Well, this would happen often at indocs, there
5 were many indoc classes I would leave and I would
6 tell Mr. Sullivan or Mr. Herzberg or Mr. Salata,
7 that I don't think this person should be here.
8 And I can tell you that probably there were ten
9 or twelve people a year who I would pick out of
10 indoc who I'd say, you know, rescind their
11 employment.
12 Q. Based on body language?
13 A. Absolutely.
14 I had people that would fall asleep.
 

Flex605

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This guy deserves the worst union he can get.

Yes pilot yip . I will meet you and tell you things that will make your head spin. This ricci guy makes up charges and fires people . His day in federal court is coming . He falsely wrote up tons of people . You challenge his write ups and he fires you . Folks if you don't vote a union at flex we are in trouble . After 18 years I'm really scared .
 
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Rubber Ducky

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Stfngr would stick it up... regardless of your body language so on that alone, I'd say he was worse.
 

pilotyip

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GlorifiedCabbie

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IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF OHIO
EASTERN DIVISION
THOMAS BOWDEN, WILLIAM BRUNET,
THOMAS JETER, WILLIAM TUMLIN,
and DAVID YEAGER,
Plaintiffs,
vs. Case No.
FLIGHT OPTIONS, L.L.C., 02-CV-1768
Defendant. Judge Nugent
- - - - -
Deposition of KENNETH C. RICCI, taken as if
upon cross-examination before Lynn A. Konitsky,
a Certified Realtime Reporter and Notary Public
within and for the State of Ohio, at the offices
of Gallagher, Sharp, Fulton and Norman, 1501
Euclid Avenue, Seventh Floor Bulkley Building,
Cleveland, Ohio, at 10:10 a.m. on Tuesday,
September 9, 2003, pursuant to notice and/or
agreement of counsel, on behalf of the Plaintiffs
in this cause.

Q. Were there discussions of the pilot groups during
the course of these negotiations?
A. Yes.
Q. What were those discussions?
A. A discussion about how seniority would integrate,
a discussion about the union that was being
organized at Travel Air. We did extensive
comparisons of the salary structures between the
two groups to attempt to understand what the
ultimate cost structure would be of putting those
two groups together.
Q. When was the union-organizing drive among the
Travel Air pilots first mentioned in these
discussions?
A. I don't know at what meeting it was first
discussed, but early on, because once we began to
look at this, we would look at the posting boards
on the Internet and we could see the activity.
I believe, even at some point in time, the
teamsters had a page on their website that talked
about the unionization at Travel Air, so we were
concerned about what the implications of that
would be for, to bring the two companies
together.
Q. And were the Flight Options managers referring to
those outlets in order to gather that
information, that is the Internet sites you
mentioned?
A. By managers, I was looking at them.
Q. You were?
A. Sure, yes.
Q. This was during the course of the negotiations
over a potential merger?
A. Yes, because I think we were concerned that if we
were going to merge with a company that was going
to ferret a union, it could considerably change
our cost structure, number one.
Number two, as I mentioned to you earlier in
the deposition, I had no desire to run that type
of company, to be involved in that kind of
management.
Q. And you looked at an Internet message board where
pilots could post messages, do you recall that?
A. Yeah, there was that. I mean, I would
frequently, there are Internet Web boards where
pilots, you can look up NetJets, you can look up
Flex Jet, there are boards on all those companies
and I would read them. I didn't just start
reading them when we started talking to Raytheon,
I was keeping abreast of my competition
throughout all the life of Flight Options. So I
would regularly, you know, see what was going on
at my competition and whether or not there was a
strategic advantage to be gained.
Q. And these pilot message boards was one of the
methods you used to gather that information?
A. Yes. There were also, some of our competitors
also had 800 numbers that their pilots would call
in, and I would listen to those sometimes.
Q. In looking at the RTA Internet message board, do
you recall in the fall/winter of 2001 during the
period of the merger discussions, do you recall
seeing messages on the board about the union?
A. Yes.
Q. Do you recall what the extent of those, what the
substance of some of those messages were?
A. I don't recall the specific substance of
messages, you know, call it union chatter about
why, you know, people were discussing why they
should have a union, they were discussing who
could be trusted and who couldn't be trusted at
RTA.
You're talking about Raytheon, not Flex Jet
or something, correct?
Q. Right. Raytheon.
A. About who the people in management were that they
liked or didn't like and, you know, I think we
were just gaining intelligence and we didn't want
to make, we didn't want to make a bad deal
either.
Q. And you recall messages on there that were pro
union?
A. Yes.
Q. Can you recall any persons who were posting on
that message board?
A. Well, there came a time, after the deal was
announced, where I paid a lot more attention to
the message board than I did before. So if
you're asking me before the merger, you know,
there was somebody called Merlin who was, I
believe, was just a fictitious name who was
probably the most, you know, vehement in terms of
their positioning.
But once the deal was announced -- and
remember that by the time we had signed the
letter, the cards were already out, so this had
progressed from chatter on an Internet board to a
formalized organizing effort, and so it required
a lot of my attention from the time we announced
the letter of intent, to get my views out as to
how you run a company and to explain to the
incoming Raytheon pilots what life would be like,
and so I spent a lot more time, after the letter
of intent, seeing who was on the Web board, names
and so on.
Q. And that letter of intent was announced when?
A. I don't remember the exact date, December 20th
seems to ring a bell.
Q. Of 2001?
A. Yes.
 

pilotyip

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You say potato. I say management thuggery!
If you had good leadership, someone who was looking out for you none of this would be taking place. I think of managment as the guys in accounting who pay the bills, the guys in ops who comply with the regs and marketing guys who sell product. Simple day to day functions that make it possible for a company to operate.
 
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