American Airlines Pilots ask for a new contract, they aren’t happy
Last year, during the spring and summer season, it was indeed a rough period for American Airlines. Several mechanics got into a habit of intentionally delaying flights as their chosen way of sending a significant message to the management. Also, one of the airline mechanics was arrested for sabotaging an aircraft as he attempted to disable the navigation system on that aircraft. Fortunately, to date, things are better operationally.
Pilots and even flight attendants’ contracts are now amendable as of December 2019 and January 2020, respectively. But currently, there’s no new contract yet for both groups.
The president of the Allied Pilots Association (APA), Captain Eric Ferguson, had released an open letter. It was delivered respectfully and informs the public on how a good contract with pilots can also benefit both the shareholders and its customers. Besides, he is pointing out the weakness of American Airlines’ management post-merger. Lastly, he’s putting everything in the management’s court to have further negotiations.
Since January last year, APA has systematically submitted and presented a series of detailed schemes designed to improve scheduling, company’s equality, and even accountability. Also, they stated in their ways to achieve industry-leading hourly pay rates and address the gaps in terms of compensation and benefits with its workers. Unfortunately, they haven’t gone that far. As per Captain Ferguson, the management’s negotiating team has no sense of urgency and just spent several months of bargaining in a receive-only mode.
According to the letter, the proposal only addresses the needs of the group, American Airlines, its passengers, and the investors as well. Such a proposal is also intended to improve the airline’s revenue performance by fostering reliable operations in all kinds of weather conditions. To sum it up, the APA proposes only what exactly the airline company needs.
The start of 2020 can also prove that this yet to be another messy year for this well-established carrier in terms of labor relations at their company as both groups, pilots and flight attendants have amendable contracts. Management and the unions should come to an agreement before heading to some sort of industrial action whether it is official or not. The groups are losing their patience though there’s still time remaining and even far from infinite as they released an open letter to heads up the management of what might become if they didn’t act with a sense of urgency.