WASHINGTON, D.C.––Leaders of the Spirit Airlines pilot group, represented by the Air Line Pilot Association, Int’l (ALPA), voted unanimously to send a strike-authorization ballot item to the 1,600 Spirit pilots for a vote opening August 21. Should the vote pass, the measure would allow the pilot leaders to call for a lawful strike if the National Mediation Board (NMB) releases the Spirit pilots into self-help and a 30-day cooling-off period is completed. The vote closes on September 8.
“Spirit pilots are not looking to strike. We are looking for an industry-standard contract that brings our compensation in line with our fellow pilots—that remains our main goal,” said Capt. Stuart Morrison, chairman of Spirit ALPA. “However, we are willing to take any lawful steps necessary, including a legal strike, to achieve the contract every Spirit pilot has earned.”
This vote comes after more than two and a half years of negotiations for a contract, the past year with the aid of a federal mediator. Currently, Spirit pilots’ compensation lags other airline pilots flying similar routes on similar aircraft by as much as 40 percent. While Spirit pilots continue to make far less than their counterparts at other airlines, the company continues to rake in significant profits for 28 consecutive quarters.
“I have no doubt that the result of this vote will send a clear message to our management that our pilot group is unified and ready to take every lawful action necessary to reach the contract we deserve,” continued Capt. Morrison. “It’s time for our management to come to the table prepared to negotiate a market-rate contract.”
Learn more about Spirit pilots’ negotiations at www.spiritcontractnow.com. Founded in 1931, ALPA is the largest airline pilot union in the world and represents over 57,000 pilots at 33 U.S. and Canadian airlines. Visit the ALPA website at www.alpa.org or follow us on Twitter @WeAreALPA.