The pilots lose protections! That is a fact! ASAP is not ARSA. If it were, there would be no need for ASAP. Union pilots don't sit on the ARSA board (there is not ARSA board). It starts with a FAA violation, and the pilot can use an ARSA receipt to lessen (limit) the FAA enforcement actions, but FAA enforcement actions are processed and they go onto the pilot's public record. ASAP stays in the administrative realm, and a fellow pilot sits on the ERC and helps to mitigate any infractions before a consesus is reached to administratively reprimand/retrain the pilot in question. The sanction is not an enforcement action against the pilot, but an administrative one. BIG DIFFERENCE!
The company didn't issue a NEW policy. It simply restated the same policy it had, all along, in different words so someone with a hard time comprehending could understand it better. NOTHING CHANGED in the 'new' policy! The same right to discipline/punish/terminate exists as it did before. A report that reveals problems with the reportee not comprehending/using existing written procedure needs to be addressed. You seem to have a problem with that calling it "punishment', where the company and the FAA call it "retraining". It it was determined to be a willful violation, they always had the right to discipline/terminate, and stated now they still do have such right. NOTHING CHANGED!
There is a HUGE difference between ASAP and ARSA with regard to violations. Under ASAP, if the FAA persues matters, the pilot may get an ADMINISTRATIVE action (letter of correction, warning notice). Under ARSA for the same event, if the FAA persues matters, the pilot may get ENFORCEMENT action.
From the FAA Order 2150.3C:
c. Aviation Safety Action Program.
(1) General. The ASAP is a program under which covered employees of certificate-holding entities with an ASAP are encouraged to voluntarily report safety information that may aid in identifying potential precursors to accidents. The ASAP precludes the FAA from using any report accepted under the program as a basis for legal enforcement action. The ASAP precludes companies from using accepted ASAP reports as a basis for disciplinary action against the reporting employee. Reports accepted by the FAA in accordance with the ASAP are protected from release to the public under 14 C.F.R. part 193. The FAA does not accept ASAP submissions if they involve reports of intentional disregard for safety, or intentional falsification, substance abuse, controlled substances, alcohol, or criminal matters. An event review committee (ERC): reviews and analyzes reports to determine whether they qualify for inclusion in the ASAP; identifies actual or potential problems from the information contained in the reports and proposes solutions for those problems; and conducts an annual review of the ASAP database to determine whether corrective actions have been effective in preventing or reducing the recurrence of targeted safety-related events.
(2) Applicability. ASAPs are intended for air carriers that operate under 14 C.F.R. parts 121 and 135 and major domestic repair stations certificated under 14 C.F.R. part 145. Other certificated entities may apply for an ASAP, and the FAA will evaluate the applicant to determine whether the applicant has adequate resources to maintain ASAP quality control. (3) Guidance. Guidance about the ASAP is contained in AC 120-66, as amended (located at http://rgl.faa.gov), and FAA Order 8900.1, volume 11 (located at https://www.faa.gov/regulations_policies/orders_notices).
d. Aviation Safety Reporting Program.
(1) General. The ASRP is a program under which an individual may report any information they believe discloses an unsafe condition in the national airspace system. The reports are made to National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), which will not release to the FAA any report that might reveal the identity of any individual involved in an occurrence or incident. Under 14 C.F.R. § 91.25, the FAA is prohibited from using ASRP 09/18/18 2150.3C 3-5 reports, i.e., both the identification strip and the body of the report, in any legal enforcement action, except information concerning accidents or criminal offenses excluded from the ASRP or unless the individual waives its protections.
(2) Sanction waiver. Under the ASRP, the FAA waives the imposition of a sanction for a violation if an individual other than a passenger files a timely report, provided that: (i) the violation was inadvertent and not deliberate; (ii) the violation did not involve a criminal offense, accident, or action under 44 U.S.C. § 44709, that discloses a lack of qualification to hold a certificate; and (iii) the individual who committed the violation has not been found to have violated an FAA statutory or regulatory provision for five years prior to the date of the violation. The finding of violation need not result from adjudication. For example, the finding could result from an unappealed FAA order that has become final. (3) Guidance. Guidance about the ASRP is contained in Advisory Circular AC 00-46, as amended (located at http://rgl.faa.gov).
(4) Legal enforcement actions under ASRP. When FAA enforcement counsel determines that an individual qualifies for a waiver of imposition of sanction under the ASRP, the FAA issues an order of suspension or order of civil penalty, as appropriate, that includes the factual allegations, findings of any regulatory violations, the sanction, a statement that the sanction associated with the finding of violations is waived, and appropriate appeal rights, if applicable (e.g., the order is not the product of a settlement waiving appeal).
Under ASAP, the pilot is protected from ENFORCEMENT ACTION by the FAA and given ADMINISTRATIVE remedy instead. Under ARSA, the pilot is subject to ENFORCEMTN ACTION by the FAA, has no ADMINISTRATIVE remedy, and is merely given waiver from sanctions.