Representing Airline Pilots

Representing airline pilots is what this union was created to do, and it’s what we do better than anyone in the world. Our original mission, self-imposed by ALPA’s founders some 86 years ago, was to give those in command of the cockpit a voice and a vote in ensuring their own safety. This union embraced a simple goal: Keep airline pilots alive and “Schedule with Safety.”

This principled goal remains today, of course, and our industry’s enviable safety record is evidence of ALPA’s commitment to it. Hundreds of pilot representatives dedicate their time and knowledge to ensure that flying remains the safest mode of travel. They’re surrounded by a staff of safety professionals who are second to none. Both ALPA pilots and staff have emerged over the years as highly-sought-after subject-matter experts in every aspect of safety, security, and pilot assistance.

Given our success, we’ve seen over time the scope of our advocacy evolve to include not only the physical safety of our members but also the safety of their careers and the future of the profession. It’s a transformation that reflects, and results from, advancements in technology, the changing dynamics of the North American economy and political climate, and the globalization of our industry.

As such, all staff members employed at ALPA, regardless of whether they’ve worked with us for 30 years or one month, are charged with a job responsibility that is woven into the overall mission of representing airline pilots to the best of our abilities.

ALPA’s strategic goals, adopted by the union’s Board of Directors, build on this union’s original duty of safety─keep aviation the safest, most secure form of travel; ensure the future of the airline piloting profession; and negotiate and enforce the strongest possible contracts. As with the success of our efforts in safety, ALPA has generated similar achievement through our engagement to protect the profession as well as our efforts to represent pilots during contract negotiations.

This issue of Air Line Pilot tells the story of each of the 31 pilot groups from the U.S. and Canada that today make ALPA 54,000 members strong. With the assistance and support of a robust professional and reputable labor relations staff and support from across the organization, ALPA’s pilot leaders and negotiators recommit every day to this union’s call to do what it does best: represent airline pilots.