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August 30, 2002
Court Upholds ALPA’s Rejection Of Concessionary Contract in CCAir Suit
CHARLOTTE, N.C.---A federal district court judge yesterday rejected efforts by Mesa Air Group to judicially impose a concessionary collective bargaining proposal for pilots at its CCAir subsidiary.
The suit was initially brought by a CCAir pilot and then joined by management after the president of the Air Line Pilots Association indicated he would not sign the proposed concessionary contract amendment. Although the proposal had been accepted by CCAir local union leaders and members, ALPA’s Constitution and By-laws requires that its president review and approve each collective bargaining agreement before it can be effective.
ALPA President Duane Woerth declined to approve the extremely concessionary proposal, which came in the context of an unbroken campaign of threats and intimidation by CCAir and Mesa Air Group to shut down the carrier if the pilots did not give up their existing agreement. President Woerth refused to approve the proposed agreement because it unjustifiably degraded pilot working conditions and offered no job security for CCAir pilots in return for the concessions. President Woerth also determined that the carrier’s management never demonstrated the need for the requested concessions and failed to show how the concessions would help save the carrier or the pilots’ jobs.
In denying a motion for a preliminary injunction which sought to order President Woerth to approve the concessionary proposal, Chief U.S. District Judge Graham C. Mullen agreed with ALPA that the requirement that its president review and approve collective bargaining agreements was well known to CCAir representatives and that there could be no collective bargaining agreement without that approval. Judge Mullen also noted that the rejected proposed agreement would likely make no immediate difference to the status of CCAir and its pilots, observing that their fate rests in the decisions of the carrier’s sole customer, US Airways, as to the flying it will permit CCAir to perform on its behalf.
"We are gratified that the court’s decision upholds the integrity of the bargaining process and recognizes the right of ALPA to safeguard pilot working conditions from unjustified attacks by management. At this point, we are hoping that we can take this out of the courtroom and back to the bargaining table, where it belongs, so that we can work together to try to save CCAir pilots’ jobs," Woerth said.
ALPA is the world’s oldest and largest union for airline pilots, representing 66,000 pilots at 43 carriers in the U.S. and Canada. Its Web site is at http://www.alpa.org.
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ALPA CONTACT: John Perkinson (703) 481-4440