Release #: 21.62
October 18, 2021

Alaska Airlines Pilots to Airline CEO: Do the Right Thing—Value Your Pilots

Negotiations Stall as Pilots Ask for a Contract in Line with Their Peers

SEATTLE—Alaska Airlines pilots, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA) today delivered a letter to their airline’s chief executive officer, Ben Minicucci, asking him to stop stalling contract negotiations and come to the table willing to bargain an industry-standard contract. After actively negotiating since spring 2019, no agreement has been reached on a new contract for the pilots.

“Alaska pilots stepped up during the pandemic to do the right thing and help keep the airline operating,” said Capt. Will McQuillen, chairman of ALPA’s Alaska Airlines Master Executive Council. “Now we’re asking Alaska management to live the company’s core value and ‘do the right thing’ by valuing our contributions to the airline and making basic quality-of-life and job security improvements that our peers at major airlines have enjoyed for years.”

The pilots delivered the letter to Minicucci ahead of the company’s 2021 third-quarter financial results, which will be announced on October 21. In the letter, the pilots remind him of the significant contributions they made to help the company weather one of the worst global health crises in a century, which included safely flying trips throughout the pandemic at risk to themselves and their families, transporting health care workers and critical medical supplies, keeping supply chains open, and playing an instrumental part in providing the financial lifeline the company needed to stay afloat by helping pass the Payroll Support Program.

“Without the Payroll Support Program funding, thousands of aviation workers would have been furloughed and Alaska would have been negatively impacted—and the company certainly would not have been positioned ready for the rebound,” said McQuillen. “As Alaska Airlines emerges from this public health and economic crisis—on track to profitability, investing in new aircraft, and stating its intentions to pay shareholder dividends and buy back stock—the pilots are respectfully asking the company to value the significant contributions they have made to Alaska Airlines by negotiating an industry-standard contract.”

Read the letter.

Founded in 1931, ALPA is the largest airline pilot union in the world and represents more than 61,000 pilots at 38 U.S. and Canadian airlines. Visit the ALPA website at or follow us on Twitter @ALPAPilots.


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