Release #: DAL 22.07
September 30, 2022

Delta Pilots Open Strike Authorization Ballot Vote

ATLANTA—Delta Air Lines pilots, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA), today opened the voting window for a strike authorization ballot. This comes as negotiations for a new contract have failed to produce an industry-leading agreement. The pilots’ contract became amendable in December 2019. They are living under pay rates, working conditions, and benefits negotiated in 2016.

“This is a crucial step in our efforts to secure a comprehensive, industry-leading contract,” said Capt. Jason Ambrosi, chair of the Delta ALPA Master Executive Council. “We do not make a decision like this lightly. However, we are long overdue for a new agreement. We intend to send management a strong message that Delta’s 14,600 pilots are willing to go the distance to achieve the contract we have earned.”

ALPA and Delta have been in mediated talks under the Railway Labor Act (RLA) since February 2020. Talks were paused during the pandemic and resumed in January. “We have made progress in some sections of our contract but are now just discussing the high-value items,” said Ambrosi. “This spring and summer, Delta pilots flew record amounts of overtime to help Delta operate its overly ambitious schedule. We are tired of management’s empty platitudes. It’s time for Delta to get serious at the bargaining table.”

The strike authorization ballot closes on October 31 at 2:00 p.m. ET. Approval of the ballot does not mean a job action is inevitable. Before a strike can take place, the National Mediation Board must first decide that additional mediation efforts would not be productive and offer the parties an opportunity to arbitrate the contract dispute. If either side declines the arbitration, both parties enter a 30-day “cooling off” period, after which the parties can engage in self-help—a strike by the union or a lockout by management.

“Thousands of Delta pilots have shown solidarity on informational picket lines across the country over the last six months. This is our future and our contract. This strike authorization ballot allows our members to tell management in no uncertain terms that it’s time to invest in the Delta pilots.”

Founded in 1931, ALPA is the largest airline pilot union in the world and represents more than 65,000 pilots at 40 U.S. and Canadian airlines. Visit or follow us on Twitter @ALPAPilots.


CONTACT: ALPA Media, 703-481-4440 or