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News ReleaseRelease #03.043
Air Transat Pilots Reach Tentative Contract Agreement Hours before Strike Deadline
MONTREAL --- Elected leaders of the union representing the cockpit crews of Air Transat announced late yesterday that their 21-month negotiating effort culminated with the attainment of a tentative agreement with management. The parties reached agreement only a few hours before a midnight deadline after which the union could have declared a strike upon 72 hours' notice.
"We are extremely pleased to have reached a tentative agreement that delivers significant gains to our members and at the same time provides stability to our employer during a difficult time for the airline and tour-operator industries," said Capt. Martin Gauthier, chairman of the Air Transat cockpit crewmembers' unit of the Air Line Pilots Association, International.
"Our company is a leader in the charter sector, and for the near term we have wages and working conditions that reflect not only the strength of the enterprise but also the exemplary service that our dedicated cockpit crews provide," Gauthier said.
Pending a ratification vote among Air Transat's roughly 320 cockpit crewmembers, the agreement would provide wage increases totaling roughly 18 percent over the life of the new contract, which would expire Nov. 1, 2005. It would also include improvements in the cockpit crews' pension plan and working conditions.
Gauthier commended the company's negotiators and, particularly, Air Transat President and CEO Allen B. Graham for their constructive bargaining during the final push to reach an agreement before the impending deadline. "The goodwill that will come out of this agreement will benefit both our members and our customers," he said.
Founded in 1931, ALPA is the world’s oldest and largest union of professional cockpit crewmembers, representing 66,000 pilots at 42 airlines in the U.S. and Canada. Visit the ALPA website at http://www.alpa.org.
Capt. Martin Gauthier
Air Transat Cockpit Crews' ALPA Office, 1-888-337-2033