Spirit Pilots Win Arbitration, Preserving Vital Scheduling Provisions

March 13, 2009 - Spirit pilots celebrated a much anticipated System Board of Adjustment decision, which orders Spirit management to cease committing contract violations by shortchanging the number of days off that pilots receive after a scheduled sequence of trips. In accordance with ALPA’s collective bargaining agreement, pilots are entitled to receive up to five days off (but no less than four) after the conclusion of a sequence of trips with no intervening days off.

The contract provision, more commonly known to Spirit pilots as the 5/4 Rule, allows commuting pilots to spend more time with their families. This provision was originally negotiated based on priorities set by the pilots; quality-of-life issues were a priority.

“The company decided it wouldn’t abide by this agreement in August,” commented ALPA Spirit MEC chairman Capt. Sean Creed. “Since then, we have been working to get back what is ours. After over two-and-a-half years of negotiations and contract violation after contract violation, this win means a lot to this group. It also sends a clear message to our management: we will fight for our contract, and we will win!”