More than expected earnings, but still no contract
MIRAMAR, FL.— Today, Spirit Airlines pilots, as represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA), responded to the company’s third-quarter financials. The company reported profits of $81.4 million, as well as better-than-expected revenue. In the call discussing the report, Spirit Airlines CEO Robert Fornaro cited “industry-leading cost structure” as a reason for “our track record of industry outperformance.”
“While Spirit Airlines management continues to post industry-leading profits, their pilots get paid below industry-standard. It’s simply a disconnect,” said Capt. Stuart Morrison, head of the Spirit unit of ALPA. “We are pleased by our company’s aggressive growth and profits, but find it difficult to feel a part of the celebration while our compensation gets more and more out of date.”
Fornaro went on to assert that current labor contracts “were not written for the carrier that we’ve become.” However, for almost two years, Spirit Airlines’ pilots have been in negotiations and have pressed for a contract that includes industry-standard compensation. The two sides entered mediation in July 2016 in an effort to finalize an agreement.
Spirit Airlines pilots are currently working under a contract that was put into effect in 2010, when the airline was less than a quarter of its present size and while other carriers were still working under bankruptcy-generated concessions. Currently, there are more than 1,400 Spirit pilots, as opposed to the approximately 400 on the property in 2010.
“As an airline, Spirit has grown and changed—becoming more profitable with a larger fleet and newer aircraft,” continued Capt. Morrison. “It’s time that our contract reflects the contributions made by Spirit pilots.”
Founded in 1931, ALPA is the largest airline pilot union in the world and represents over 54,000 pilots at 31 U.S. and Canadian airlines. Visit the ALPA website at www.alpa.org or follow us on Twitter @WeAreALPA.
CONTACT: ALPA Media, 703-481-4440 or Media@alpa.org