September 10, 2001
Air Wisconsin ALPA Pilots Ratify Contract
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The pilots of United Express carrier Air Wisconsin, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, International, are poised to begin working under a new set of contract terms now that pilots have ratified a tentative agreement reached between ALPA and management last month. The ballot results announced today indicate that 91.4% of voting members chose to adopt the new labor agreement.
"The fact that an overwhelming majority of our pilots voted yes demonstrates once again the unity that has empowered this pilot group throughout the past two years of negotiations. This unity, along with the valuable assistance we received from our International union and its member pilot groups, including UAL, made it possible for us to achieve our contract goals," said Captain Carl Fleming, chairman of the ALPA unit at Air Wisconsin. "Thanks also in large part to the significant sacrifices made by our fellow Comair pilots, we were able to raise the bar in negotiating much needed improvements in this new contract. I hope that the trend will continue, with other pilot groups negotiating contracts that surpass ours," Fleming added.
Pilot acceptance of the new contract should pave the way for enhanced labor-management relations with Air Wisconsin. "We look forward to rededicating our focus and energies on continuing a fruitful relationship with our coworkers and management — a collaboration that emphasizes top-drawer service to our valued customers," said Fleming.
Prior to the ratification, Air Wisconsin’s 700 plus pilots had been working under a concessionary agreement dating back to 1994. Beginning in July 1999 and prompting federal mediation 14 months later, these contract negotiations went to the wire, concluding in an agreement just minutes before pilots had the legal authority to strike.
The newly adopted terms represent important gains for the pilots in pay, retirement, job security, and rest and duty provisions. "This contract not only improves our overall quality of work life, but also recognizes our considerable responsibilities and contributions as professionals and partners in this enterprise," Fleming said.
As a United Express carrier, Air Wisconsin provides exclusive service to many Colorado ski resorts and midwestern communities, carrying a significant proportion of its passengers to and from hubs at Chicago O’Hare and Denver International airports.
Celebrating its 70th anniversary, ALPA is the world’s oldest and largest pilots union, representing more than 66,000 members at 47 airlines in the U.S. and Canada. Visit the ALPA Website at cf.alpa.org.
ALPA Contact: Anya Piazza or John Mazor, 703-481-4440