Spirit Pilots Walk the Line at Atlantic City Int’l Airport

Click here to view a photo slideshow of the picketing.

June 8, 2010 - With less than four days remaining until the deadline of a 30-day cooling-off period, Spirit pilots walked the picket line on Tuesday, June 8 at the Atlantic City Int’l Airport, in preparation for what could be a final-hour showdown.

Spirit pilots were joined by ALPA members from Continental, ExpressJet, Delta, and United—as well as pilots from US Airways. The more than 30 pilots marched across from the main entrance of the airport terminal.

The pilots, demonstrating their unity and determination to negotiate a fair contract, carried a variety of signs highlighting the June 12 deadline. Spirit pilot earnings are some of the lowest, as compared to those of peer pilot groups, despite the fact that Spirit Airlines posted an ample $83 million in profits last year. The Spirit pilot leadership has announced plans to declare a strike on Saturday if the pilots and management are unable to reach an agreement by that time.

“We appreciate the tremendous turnout from both our members and the fellow pilots from other carriers,” said Spirit Council 18 Chairman Capt. David Morlando. “After nearly four years of negotiations, we’ve waited long enough for a fair and reasonable contract.”

As ALPA media spokesman for the event, Morlando granted interviews to the local NBC and ABC television news affiliates (WMGM and WPVI, respectively). He also spoke at length with a reporter from The Press of Atlantic City.

More media coverage: Detroit Free Press, CBS.