ALPA Scores Victory in NAA Vacation Pay Arbitration
Last Friday, the
North American Airlines MEC was
notified that the arbitrator ruled in favor of the NAA pilots in the matter of
the vacation pay grievance. This win for NAA pilots comes three months after the
System Board of Adjustment hearing on this grievance, which was held on October
31, 2011, nearly three years after it was filed.
“This is an example of ALPA and the NAA MEC’s serious commitment to our
collective bargaining agreement (CBA) and willingness to vigorously defend it,”
Capt. Al Gallo, NAA MEC chairman, said. “ALPA recognized the importance of
defending our contract and came fully prepared to do so. On behalf of all the
NAA pilots, I would like to thank ALPA attorney and contract administrator Dan
Froehlich, whose legal guidance and strong defense throughout this process was
instrumental in this victory.”
At issue was whether NAA management is violating the contract and/or the
“Vacation that Overlaps a Day Free from Duty” Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)
(dated October 31, 2008) by the methodology they use to pay pilots for vacation
days that overlap with scheduled days free from duty.
ALPA and the MEC attempted several times to seek a
negotiated settlement, but NAA’s senior management refused to respect the
vacation agreement that they signed in the CBA and subsequent Vacation MOU. In
meetings with management on this issue, ALPA established that the MEC had little
room for compromise where they felt the clear language and intent of the
contract was violated.
The MEC had the full backing of the NAA pilots, who demonstrated their
tenacity and willingness to adhere to the contract throughout the process. “This
decision proves that a committed line pilot workforce, led by a strong MEC, with
the full resources of ALPA, can prevail,” Capt. Gallo added.
Going forward, the MEC will take the necessary steps to quantify damages for
the pilot group and develop a schedule of owed vacation compensation. They will
also ensure that pilots are properly compensated from this point on in
accordance with the arbitrator’s award.