Release #: 20.14
June 02, 2020

Global Aviation Standards Pave Way for Safe Return to Air Travel

ICAO Report Underscores ALPA’s Calls for Mandated Public Health Standards


MCLEAN, Va.—The Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA) today applauded recommendations from the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the aviation arm of the United Nations, that provide guidance to global aviation authorities on how to safely resume air travel as the world begins to rebuild after the COVID-19 pandemic, while reiterating their call for airlines to be required to adhere to established public health protocols.

The report, Take-off: Guidance for Air Travel through the COVID-19 Public Health Crisis, underscores ALPA’s efforts to establish a baseline set of uniform guidance for COVID-19 health monitoring, protection, and employee exposure notification and workplace disinfection as a key component in regaining public confidence in air travel and getting our passengers back on board.

“ALPA pilots remain committed to taking the steps necessary to keep our crews and passengers healthy in order to get the aviation economy back on a positive trajectory. Airline pilots have been on the frontlines of this global health crisis since day one, helping our industry weather this storm, and are ready to further connect communities around world as airline operations begin to increase,” said Capt. Joe DePete, ALPA president. “It is important that we remain focused on promoting public health and regaining confidence among the traveling public, while continuing to press lawmakers for mandatory compliance with these and other voluntary guidelines.”

The multifaceted report, developed by ICAO’s Council Aviation Recovery Task Force, highlighted the importance of strengthening public health measures in all aspects of the “travel experience” while minimizing operational impact. Such measures, including the establishment of baseline health guidelines related to aircraft and flight deck cleaning and disinfection and personal protective equipment for flight crews are all key recommendations that ALPA has been advocating for to protect air passengers and aviation workers from COVID-19.

“This collaborative effort by the global aviation community will enable the growth of air travel as it recovers from the pandemic. It is crucial that all countries adopt these commonsense measures so that we can create universal guidelines that further strengthen aviation public health and consumer confidence,” added DePete.

Founded in 1931, ALPA is the largest airline pilot union in the world and represents over 63,000 pilots at 34 U.S. and Canadian airlines. Visit the ALPA website at alpa.org or follow us on Twitter @WeAreALPA.

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CONTACT: ALPA Media, 703-481-4440 or Media@alpa.org