ALPA

Leadership From the Cockpit

48 Results for Category Industry

“When passengers are ready to fly, we’re ready to welcome them back onboard.” This is the loud message the  Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA) delivered last week to the flying public who might be contemplating booking their first trip since March.

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The start of a new school year is upon us, but for millions of teachers and students across the country, including future airline pilots, going back to school this year looks a lot different.  While aviation today is experiencing unprecedented circumstances, this is not the first time our industry has faced challenges, and the path to becoming an airline pilot remains unchanged—the Air Line Pilots Association, International (ALPA) continues its mission to inspire and equip students of all ages with the right tools to become airline pilots.

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 Special guest commentary by F/O Karen Lacy (DAL)

Like most airline pilots, aviation is in my blood. My paternal grandparents had their private pilots’ licenses, and my dad has his private pilot license and was a PATCO air traffic controller. Looking back, there wasn’t a time when I wasn’t interested in flying. I went to college for aviation, but I started shortly before 9/11 so the job market was pretty bleak when I graduated. I tried several nonflying jobs, but nothing felt “right” until I started flight instructing in my spare time. Before too long, I took the plunge and began my career at a U.S. regional carrier. After a several years, I was hired by a major U.S. airline, and I was thrilled to finally be at my dream job.

But now that dream job is turning into a nightmare. The impact of COVID-19 has created an unprecedented crisis for many of our nation’s industries, but airlines have been hit exceptionally hard.

Being an airline pilot is more than just a job. I met my husband while working, and I had my first baby while we were pilots. What I do for a living makes up so much of who I am. And today, I know that on October 1 I will be out of a job.

Categories: Industry


Time is running out for many American workers. The Payroll Support Program—which prevents companies that receive CARES Act grants from making layoffs or involuntary furloughs and secures the pay and benefits for airline workers—expires on September 30. This fall, hundreds of thousands of more workers across our entire economy could lose their jobs and health insurance due to the pandemic.

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As the world confronts COVID-19, airline pilots are doing our jobs: safeguarding passengers and freight while bringing people, goods, and services together to drive the global economy. As your captains and first officers, we need Congress to do its job by swiftly providing economic assistance to stabilize the airline industry and protect the frontline aviation workers who help keep our skies safe and our country moving.

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