Seniority in Flight Service. Fair or Unfair?


Junior Member
Feb 19, 2009
Flight Service has always had a problem of being plagued by low attrition which has had a very adverse impact on the seniority system. I know of multiple ex-FAA flight service guys that retired at the bottom of the seniority list right where they started. These people had 20,22, even 23 years of service and still were stuck at the bottom since no other specialists were hired at their facility. Guess they had to pay their dues until they retired, lol. Many specialists were not last but stuck near the bottom for their whole career as well. That's an entire career of crappy schedules, RDO's, and vacation slots.

With the recent election of the IAM the same problem is brewing. Lockheed just went through a massive hiring wave several years ago and now is at their ideal staffing level. They have said they do not intend to replace retires anytime soon. This means that people near the bottom end of the seniority list are stuck with no movement.

Is this really fair in this particular situation? Typically seniority systems are only fair when there is a reasonable attrition rate. Most specialists at the bottom 1/4 of the list are not happy. Not because of the seniority system, but because they are stuck at the bottom with no hope for much movement in their career. Most of these individuals are going back to school to get out or currently trying to get out. It takes years for a specialist to be fully trained and become a journeyman. I am not happy about seeing qualified people at the bottom of the list constantly leaving and then constantly having to retrain new people. The IAM needs to figure out a more fair system.


Jul 24, 2010
Stop complaining, i know for FSS in FTW that have no education and came from FEDEX that are paid very well to ansewer a phone.
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