Horizon Air Pilots Petition NMB After Nearly Four Years of Contract Talks

Jan 28, 2010, 16:29 ET from International Brotherhood of Teamsters

Experienced Pilots Want Just Compensation and Fair Work Rules

WASHINGTON, Jan. 28 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The International Brotherhood of Teamsters petitioned the National Mediation Board (NMB) today for their assistance in concluding negotiations between Horizon Air pilots, Horizon and parent holding company Alaska Air Group.

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The pilots have been engaged in direct negotiations since the company served a Section 6 notice on the Teamsters nearly four years ago.

"Four years of negotiations is more than enough time to reach an agreement that provides just compensation and fair work rules for the most experienced and talented pilots in the regional airline industry," said Teamsters Airline Division Director Capt. David Bourne.

"We are asking the NMB to help us reach an agreement that recognizes the high level of service and commitment these pilots provide," Bourne said.  

Horizon Air captains average 17 years of experience with the carrier and their average age is 47. First officers average five years of experience with Horizon Air and their average age is 32. They fly aircraft that are on the leading edge of technology compared with other regional carriers. They are regularly qualified on that equipment during recurrent and proficiency evaluations mandated and closely monitored by the Federal Aviation Administration.

"While the Alaska Air Group enjoys record profits, it has adamantly refused to share even a modest portion of those profits with the professional pilots that provide dependable daily service to the customers of Horizon Air and its sister carrier, Alaska Airlines," Bourne said.  "Instead, the carrier seeks concessions from its pilots, which devalues the flight deck experience and talent that allows the company to make its profits.  

"The International Brotherhood of Teamsters is committed to helping the Horizon pilots achieve a contract that fully recognizes their contribution to their carrier's success.   We will fully support the Horizon pilots as they negotiate for a just contract that recognizes their career expectations, respects the commitment of their families, and makes their passengers' travel experience the best possible."  

The International Brotherhood of Teamsters was founded in 1903 and represents 1.4 million hardworking men and women in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

SOURCE International Brotherhood of Teamsters