Release #07.RYN
January 23, 2007


Ryan Pilots File for Mediation

ROCKFORD, IL -- The pilots of Rockford-based Ryan International Airlines, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, Intl., have filed to seek mediation with the National Mediation Board (NMB) after more than 18 months of negotiations and virtually no progress at the negotiating table. The request for mediation was made as a result of what the pilots view as stall tactics being employed by management of the airline.

“It has become clear this airline is in no hurry to reach a collectively bargained agreement that addresses the concerns of our crewmembers,” said Captain Erik Sparks, Chairman of the Ryan Master Executive Council. “Progress at the table has reached a standstill, and it is time for us to move to mediation in hopes of reaching the fair agreement that our crewmembers have earned and deserve.”

Ryan International Airlines is a provider of aircraft and crews to the US Department of Defense, US Department of Justice, Funjet, Apple Vacations, Aero Sur and Gold Transportation operating McDonnell Douglas MD80 and Boeing 737 and 757 jet aircraft.

Little progress has been made on any substantive issues since negotiations began in July 2005. Unresolved issues at the negotiating table include a catch-up on cost of living adjustments lost over the last five years, per diem allowances away from home, date of hire longevity and quality of life issues that take pilots away from their families.

“Ryan has indulged in extremely lucrative contracts with organizations, such as the Department of Defense in the last five years,” said Sparks. “Despite this, the Ryan pilots have had to continue to fight for any improvements to their labor agreement.”

ALPA President, Capt. John Prater, filed the request for mediation from the National Mediation Board on January 4, 2007. The Board has appointed a mediator who has been in contact with the parties.

Pursuant to the Railway Labor Act, the NMB provides an integrated dispute resolution process to effectively meet the statutory objective of minimizing work stoppages in the airline and railroad industries.

Founded in 1931, ALPA is the world’s largest pilot union, representing 60,000 pilots at 40 airlines in the United States and Canada, including 154 pilots who fly for Ryan International Airlines. Visit the ALPA website at

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ALPA Contacts: Karen Byer, (703) 481-4131