Negotiations Update 2012/05/01

Yesterday, April 30, 2012, the Company learned through a press release that United MEC Chairman Captain Jay Heppner intends to direct the ALPA President to formally submit the paperwork to the National Mediation Board (“NMB”) seeking release from mediation. Notwithstanding this rhetoric, ALPA, the Company and the NMB have agreed to the current process of small group meetings utilizing the mediation services of the NMB. Neither ALPA nor the NMB have informed us that the process won’t continue. Recognizing that there are many issues left to address, the process is working and we continue to make progress on scheduling and the other open sections of the contract.

In an effort to focus on steps to reach a joint agreement, the parties enlisted the assistance of the senior mediator who was involved in reaching the sUA flight attendant agreement in early January. In the planning meeting she attended on April 11, 2012, the Company proposed that the principals accelerate negotiations in a concentrated, three-week period beginning In April. We recommended addressing the largest stumbling blocks to a deal, namely scope, benefits and rates of pay. Once these large economic issues are resolved the Company and ALPA would be in a much better position to more quickly resolve the more than 150 or so items that remain outstanding. In the meeting, ALPA informed the Company that due to “internal issues”, they could not negotiate these items until after scheduling was complete. The Company and ALPA currently estimate completion of the scheduling and related sections will occur in mid-May.

The Company has made an effort to conclude these negotiations, including our proposal in 2011, through binding arbitration. We have put substantial value on the table that is in excess of the current Delta rates of pay and we’ve had conceptual discussions about a contract with total pilot cost increases of over 20%. Conversely the current ALPA proposal is valued in excess of $1.3 billion in incremental cost per year and jeopardizes the viability of the Company.

Successful negotiation requires real commitment and a willingness to address the issues and concerns of both parties to the negotiation. Engaging in a multi-faceted political campaign while failing to communicate directly will not facilitate a joint agreement.

We can agree on one thing - our pilots deserve a fair joint agreement and the Company remains committed to reaching one.


Pilots Negotiations Updates: Archive