April 22, 2010
Management Foot-Dragging Forces Piedmont Pilots to Seek Federal Help in Contract Talks
Pilots: No Progress Toward Fair Contract After Nearly a Year of Negotiations
Salisbury, Md.—Today, the pilots of Piedmont Airlines, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA), announced that they have applied for mediation from the National Mediation Board, the government entity that oversees airline labor relations. This application comes after 11 months of contract talks with the company, resulting in only two contract sections being agreed upon and continuous stalling from management. The National Mediation Board is expected to assign a mediator who will assist in moving the two sides toward an agreement.
“When we entered into negotiations in May 2009, we didn’t expect it to be an easy process,” said Captain Charles Martinak, chairman of the Piedmont unit of ALPA. “However, we did expect the company to fully engage in the process—which, simply put, it hasn’t.”
During negotiating sessions, management has routinely responded to proposals from the pilots union with a terse “current book or less”—indicating that the company will only agree to the current language in the contract or concessions from the pilot group. Management has also resisted attempts from the union to schedule additional negotiating sessions, only offering two days a month over the next five.
“For 11 months, we’ve sat across the table from a management that seems to have no interest in coming to an agreement,” said Captain Dale Mojta, who leads the Negotiating Committee for the Piedmont pilots. “Hopefully, a mediator can put an end to these stonewalling tactics, and this pilot group can get the fair contract we deserve.”
Founded in 1931, ALPA is the world’s largest pilot union and represents 53,000 pilots at 38 airlines in the United States and Canada, including more than 470 pilots at Piedmont Airlines. Visit the ALPA website at www.alpa.org.
Captain Charles Martinak—(717) 926-8622
Jennifer Lofquist—(703) 481-4459