Our Commitment to Keeping the Skies Safe

On behalf of more than 58,000 pilots of the Air Line Pilots Association, International, ALPA applauds the Department of Transportation and Secretary Elaine Chao’s commitment to making it easier for our veterans to work in the best industry in the world. Many of ALPA’s members have proudly served our country in uniform, and the union stands ready to assist others in breaking down barriers that may impede them from pursuing carriers in aviation, all while maintaining the highest levels of safety.

No one is more committed to ensuring we have enough qualified and experienced pilots than ALPA. The good news is that we currently have more fully qualified pilots in the United States than there are positions available, and air travel is the safest mode of transportation in the world due to our commitment to schedule with safety.

However, we do need to make sure we have an adequate future supply of qualified pilots—who earn good salaries, experience a healthy work/life balance, and can anticipate predictable career progression. That’s why ALPA has invested member resources for more than 30 years to mentor and inspire the next generation of pilots and to staunchly advocate for loan-guarantee programs and other incentives to make it more affordable to become an airline pilot. And it’s why we’ve launched, with others in the aviation industry, Aviation Works 4U, a one-stop shop for exploring pathways to a career in aviation.

ALPA is fully committed to doing what it takes to keep the pilot pipeline strong, our skies safe, and provide reliable air service to rural America, and are eager to continue to work with Congress, the Department of Transportation, and our industry partners to achieve these goals. However, as we work to ensure that we have a healthy supply of pilots, we should not weaken pilot-qualification requirements and make our skies less safe. We can address pilot-supply issues without weakening air safety rules and jeopardizing the flying public.

ALPA continues to oppose the Thune Amendment, which would reduce the level of safety in our industry and was included in the Senate Commerce Committee’s version of the FAA’s reauthorization bill, and we will strongly oppose any regulatory proposal that emerges with the same intent, including a provision that was part of the recently released Air Carrier Training Aviation Rulemaking Committee.

Categories: Advocacy, Industry, Safety