Call with the FAA Today, May 6

PASS Brothers and Sisters:

We had another informative call with the agency this afternoon. I want to reiterate that there is no timeline set by either the FAA or the Department of Transportation regarding a ‘reopening’ of facilities. However, we are discussing issues and concerns that you are already raising in anticipation of returning in person to work.

The agency is planning to release a series of FAQs about return-to-work as well as a cleaning video that will explain the protocols that are in place to reduce exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace. PASS is providing input and feedback on both. The FAQs are expected to clarify the use of masks and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regarding such topics as how long an employee needs to stay away from a facility following onset of symptoms of the COVID, air ventilation systems and more.

Pulse Survey: I want to thank all of you who took the pulse survey distributed two weeks ago. We are in the process of reviewing the information we received. The goal was to learn about your concerns and how we can all do better.

Facility cleaning: The contracts for Level 2 cleaning at facilities are being extended for two months. I am pleased to report that ATO is ahead of other lines of business on cleaning and I am pushing the agency to see that AVS is following the same protocols and levels of cleaning to protect AVS employees when they return to their offices.

Periodic maintenance (PMs): Technical Operations will be issuing an updated Maintenance Alert next Tuesday, May 12. It will extend the current maintenance alert and add some critical PMs but there will not be a lot of changes. This will not be a “return to normal operations” change.

Video conferencing and training: We were able to raise with the agency an issue a PASS member brought to our attention yesterday. Some employees have been maxing out their data plans because of all the additional video conferences and online training. Although there are no plans to issue mobile hot spot devices, the agency will ask managers to be mindful of the issue when assigning work that requires heavy internet usage. Some of you may have an FAA-issued smartphone that can be used as a hot spot but please note, those accounts will be flagged if data use exceeds 50 gigabytes.

The agency is currently looking at virtual options for training. Another PASS member concern sent to us this week said that they were being required to use the video option for training. Unlike standard meetings held through FAA Zoom, training sessions may require an instructor to be able to see the employee so camera use would be required. The agency will clarify its guidance to the field.

Although we have seen a decline in the number of member concerns being submitted, I encourage all of you to continue using our form if you have questions or issues that need to be addressed as we continue to work with the agency during this difficult time.

In Solidarity,

Mike Perrone
Naitonal President

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