Release #: ALA-VRD 17.02
July 05, 2017

Mediated Negotiations for Joint Alaska-Virgin America Pilot Contract Conclude

Pilots, Management Fail to Reach Agreement; Head Toward Arbitration

SEATTLE, Wash.—Alaska Airlines and Virgin America pilots, both represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA), announced today that mediated negotiations for a joint contract have concluded. The pilots were unable to reach a tentative agreement for a joint collective bargaining agreement because Alaska Airlines management refuses to recognize that its pilots should earn compensation and benefits in line with their industry peers, and has steadfastly refused to reach an agreement on job-security language that is standard in the industry. Pilot negotiations will be resolved in arbitration hearings that begin at the end of August.

“We are deeply disappointed in management’s failure to negotiate a market-rate agreement for our pilots. Management continues to insist that Alaska/Virgin America pilots should work for less than their industry peers,” said the Alaska and Virgin America MEC chairmen Chris Notaro and Joe Youngerman.

A joint pilot contract is the important first step in the process of combining the two pilot groups as Alaska management works to merge the two airlines. The next steps in the pilot-integration process cannot begin until a joint contract is in place.

About ALPA

Founded in 1931, ALPA is the world’s largest pilot union, representing more than 57,000 pilots at 33 airlines in the United States and Canada. Visit the ALPA website at or follow us on Twitter @WeAreALPA, @AlaskaMECALPA, @VXALPA, and on Facebook: /MECAlaska.


CONTACT: ALPA Media, 703-481-4440 or
Alaska MEC, Jenn Sutton: 206-241-3138 or 425-221-3179
Virgin America MEC, Katy Adams: 561-385-3098