April 27, 2007
Alaska Pilots to Picket Corporate Headquarters on May 1
Seattle, Wash.—Alaska Airlines pilots will conduct informational picketing and hold a rally May 1 to demonstrate to their management that they are unified in their effort to achieve a better contract.
The nearly 1,500 pilots of Alaska Airlines currently are in contract negotiations. Two years ago, Alaska’s management requested, and an arbitrator imposed, contractual changes that included pay cuts ranging from 21%-34%.
“Two years ago, when the arbitrator ruled on the contract, the industry and Alaska Airlines were in a much different position financially,” said Capt. Tom Crank, chairman of the Alaska pilots union. “Alaska Airlines is coming off of a record-profit year and is poised to become more efficient and profitable. The pilots shared in the pain two years ago; we now expect to share in the gains.”
Under the Railway Labor Act, the pilots’ contract does not expire, but rather becomes amendable. May 1 marks that date.
Pilots and management began negotiations in January. The two parties have reached tentative agreements on six of the 31 contract sections; neither party sought changes to an additional six sections. Issues involving pay, retirement and scheduling have not yet been agreed upon.
While it is not uncommon for negotiations that fall under the Railway Labor Act to take a considerable amount of time, the Alaska pilots are disappointed that in a time of prosperity, management’s early proposals indicate that they expect any pay raises will be given only if the pilots are willing to grant further work rule concessions.
“Alaska’s pilots have sacrificed enough,” said Capt. Tom Crank, chairman of the Alaska pilots’ union. “We will not give up any more to receive the pay increases that we have earned.”
|What:||Informational picketing and a rally|
|Where:||Angle Lake Park, 19408 International Blvd., SeaTac, WA|
|When:||Informational picketing to begin at 11:30 a.m.; rally to begin at 2 p.m.|
Founded in 1931, the Air Line Pilots Association represents 60,000 pilots at 40 airlines in the United States and Canada, including the approximately 1,500 pilots at Alaska Airlines.
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Media Contact: Jenn Farrell
Office: (206) 241-3138; Cell: (303) 522-6399