'Meetings give pilot union leaders opportunity to share information and
plan negotiating strategy on a regular basis'
FORT WORTH, TEXAS, June 5 /CNW/ - Airline pilot union officials from
across North America are gathered in Dallas, Texas for a two-day meeting that
began this morning focused on discussions of airline industry economics,
contractual trends and an analysis of current collective bargaining pressures.
The Allied Pilots Association (APA) and the Southwest Airlines Pilots'
Association (SWAPA) are co-hosting the meeting comprised of the elected
leaders, negotiating committee chairs and other key representatives of airline
pilot unions from the United States and Canada.
"Pilots have said it loud and clear--the time has arrived to restore the
profession," said APA President Captain Ralph Hunter. "These meetings provide
an invaluable opportunity to share information and plan strategy in bargaining
for our fair share of the financial rewards generated by our industry's return
In all, some 70 union officials representing pilots from 16 different
carriers are participating in the roundtable-style discussions.
"Despite the fact that we fly for many different carriers, it's evident
that we share many common concerns as we seek to protect and enhance our
pilots' career prospects," said SWAPA President Carl Kuwitzky.
Roundtable participants take turns hosting the twice-yearly meetings. The
Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) hosted the most recent gathering this past
February in Washington, D.C.
"Our profession is dedicated to improving airline pilot pay and working
conditions," said ALPA President Captain John Prater. "We learned after 9/11
that a unified effort is our only option to reach that goal."
Roundtable participants emphasized that as management at various carriers
has awarded themselves bonuses, stock grants and other forms of compensation
during the past couple of years, pilots' needs--both financial and
quality-of-life--must be addressed as well.
Founded in 1963, the Allied Pilots Association--the largest independent
pilot union in the U.S.--is headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas. APA represents
the 12,000 pilots of American Airlines (the nation's largest passenger
carrier), including 2,688 pilots on furlough. The furloughs began shortly
after the September 11, 2001 attacks. Also, several hundred American Airlines
pilots are on full-time military leave of absence serving in the armed forces.
The union's Web site address is www.alliedpilots.org.
Founded in 1978, the Southwest Airlines Pilots' Association is an
independent union representing the 5,400-plus pilots of Southwest Airlines.
SWAPA is based in Dallas, Texas. The union's Web site is www.swapa.org.
For further information:
For further information: Karen Absalom, 214-722-4231 (SWAPA) or Capt.
Denny Breslin, 619-980-8941 (APA) or Gregg Overman, 817-312-3901 (APA) or Don
Skiados, 703-481-4444 (ALPA)