AirTran Airways pilots launch ALPA ballot drive!

DonVerita

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This is long overdue and welcome development!

Official Release:

November 28, 2008

Dear Fellow AirTran Pilot:

We are pleased to announce the formation of AirTran Pilots for ALPA—a group of AirTran pilots with diverse backgrounds and experience. We are Captains and First Officers, NPA volunteers and those who have never volunteered. Some are former ALPA members, others are former Teamsters. What binds us together is a common vision of better representation and a brighter future for our fellow AirTran pilots.
These are our guiding principles:

First, we all believe in our company and are committed to its growth and success.

Second, we all believe that AirTran pilots need and deserve effective union representation.

Third, we all believe that recent representation activities don’t provide the opportunity for AirTran pilots to obtain and review complete information about choices we have for our future.

As most of you know, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters has started an organizing drive and is circulating authorization cards. Some of you have expressed the belief that those cards will just permit the Teamsters to meet with the NPA Board. Others seem to have signed cards out of frustration with the NPA and the lack of progress in negotiations with the Company. But many pilots we talk to haven’t been told that by signing a card they are authorizing the Teamsters to petition the National Mediation Board for a representation election.

AirTran Pilots for ALPA believes that we can't sit idly by, waiting for the NPA Board to complete debate about a merger process, while the Teamsters organize and circulate cards. The NPA Board has been examining this issue since August, and we still don’t have guidance from the president when we will get information about both unions and when we’ll have the chance to give our input. At this point we don't know when, how, or if the NPA Board will act. The Teamster card push causes us to take our own steps to obtain more information about our choices and insist on a balanced approach. Therefore, we feel that we must move forward, as we firmly believe that ALPA – a Union exclusively for pilots, by pilots, and of pilots – presents a superior choice to the Teamsters.

Why ALPA? From our discussions with fellow AirTran pilots, we think that you’re most interested in an improved collective bargaining agreement, stronger contract enforcement, better benefits, enhanced job security, and world-class safety support. We know that ALPA has the professional negotiators, lawyers, communication specialists, analysts, and infrastructure to back up those programs and support us.

Why ALPA? We think there is a huge difference between a national union that is dedicated, structured, and resourced to support pilots on these issues and a union that is structured to support issues important to truck drivers, warehouse workers, and ground employees. We think there is a difference between a union like ALPA, where we elect pilots to make decisions and recommendations; and a union like the Teamsters where decisions for our pilot group are made by hired business agents who aren’t accountable to us. We think there is a difference between a union like ALPA where financial and organizational decisions are made only by pilots; and a union like the Teamsters where truck drivers, warehouse workers, and ground employees—who vastly outnumber pilots—make that union’s financial and organizational decisions. Inside the IBT, the Airline Division is a very small part of their membership, and pilots are a small part of the Airline Division.

While we come from different backgrounds, we all agree on one more thing — that ALPA will support us better and provide much more effective representation than either the NPA or the Teamsters on the issues that matter most to us.

It’s this backdrop that has caused us to circulate authorization cards for ALPA representation of AirTran pilots. Although we strongly prefer that the NPA pursue a merger with ALPA, if the Board continues to delay and the IBT continues to collect cards, we can’t stand by while important decisions about our future—including whether we want ALPA or the Teamsters—are made without the full participation of our pilot group. These cards can be used to petition the National Mediation Board for a representation election. We hope that the NPA Board will take steps to get more information from both unions very shortly and provide it to the pilot group in a balanced way following its December 11–12 meeting. In the meantime, we intend to make sure pilots have the opportunity to receive information about both ALPA and IBT.

This is a serious matter, and we invite you to gather facts and ask tough questions. We’ll be circulating cards and trying to answer your questions. If we don’t know the answer to your question, we’ll track down the information and get it to you.

If you would like to support our efforts to bring ALPA to AirTran, please send an e-mail to apfa09@gmail.com. Be sure to include your name, address, telephone number, and e-mail. While this initiative is already supported by a large group of AirTran pilots, participation by even more volunteers is welcome and will serve us well. We look forward to meeting with you soon and talking with you about ALPA representation. Thanks!

AirTran Pilots for ALPA
 

stlflyguy

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How's PCL128 taking it? Big smile?

stlflyguy
 

N2264J

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How's PCL128 taking it? Big smile?
He was there "on the ground" during the last Colgan and Skywest ALPA drives.

Come to think of it, maybe he should just sit this one out.
 
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Fozzy

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You have guys actually considering bringing in the IBT??!?? :eek:
Wow. I think you folks need to do some research into the :puke:IBT. Completely worthless.
Just ask any NJA pilot how they fell about Hoffa and his henchmen. We could not get them out the door fast enough. All they want is to steal your money.
 

71driver

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I will sign an APLA card as soon as I see it....it can't be soon enough our NPA is a JOKE, WORTHLESS, DISFUNCTIONAL, PUPPET MASTER, SPINELESS, NOT WORTHY OF EVEN BEING CALLES A UNION!!!
WE spend about 1.8 million a year and all we have got for that is the further errosion of our contract, oh and two pilots out of a job and our union is doing business as usual....no I think ALPA will win hands down most folks don't see the teamsters as a good fit for PILOTS.
 

CaptBud330

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Do Not Join Alpo

If you want to see your dues pay for the lavish lifestyles of the executives, join ALPO.
ONLY 30 cents on the dollar is returned to you in services, the rest is spent running the union. What a waste of resources. There is nothing an in house union can't do cheaper and more efficiently then ALPO.
 

Lear70

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If you want to see your dues pay for the lavish lifestyles of the executives, join ALPO.

ONLY 30 cents on the dollar is returned to you in services, the rest is spent running the union. What a waste of resources. There is nothing an in house union can't do cheaper and more efficiently then ALPO.
Don't know much about AirTran, do you?

If the in-house union WAS doing it "cheaper" (they're not, the dues are higher) and "more efficiently" (they're not, the budget is a joke), then there wouldn't be such a HUGE support for a card drive for a change of representation.

That's the fact, jack. You don't see SWAPA or APA pushing a card drive, because their in-house union CAN get those things done (although, arguably, SWAPA has enjoyed their success because of management's willingness to do the right thing for the last 20 years).

If that was the same story here, there wouldn't be a card drive. Yes, there's some things I don't like about ALPA, but they truly are THE BEST OPTION moving forward.

You can't ignore the past, and every union has had their problems, but at least ALPA gives the AirTran pilots a fighting chance for our FUTURE.
 

CFIT

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If you want to see your dues pay for the lavish lifestyles of the executives, join ALPO.
ONLY 30 cents on the dollar is returned to you in services, the rest is spent running the union. What a waste of resources. There is nothing an in house union can't do cheaper and more efficiently then ALPO.

Does anybody have figure on the amount of dues collected in a year by ALPA?
 

Rez O. Lewshun

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Does anybody have figure on the amount of dues collected in a year by ALPA?

The finance report, including the projected 2008 and 2009 annual dues collected, is available on the log in section of alpa.org

ALPA members can use their member number and password!
 
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Lear70

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RS4 airbags... just when I thought I'd seen it all - LOL. (owner of a 2002 S4).

Have no idea what the amount of dues collected is per year, and yes, it's true, the Admin Assistant (secretary) to the ALPA president makes more than most of our F/O's.

That's not a sign that ALPA admin is overpaid, it's a sign of how dramatically WE are UNDERPAID.

My buddy who has no degree has a job with Verizon as an assistant manager and makes over $60k. My ex who has no degree has a job in a medical office making $60k.

The aviation profession is, as a whole, a joke in terms of compensation packages. Time, indeed, to take it the hell back!
 
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stlflyguy

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He was there "on the ground" during the last Colgan and Skywest ALPA drives.

Come to think of it, maybe he should just sit this one out.
:rolleyes: I'm sure he an the other Rez-bians will be out in full force.

stlflyguy
 

zman

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For the people who are bashing ALPA can you really blame the pilots at Airtran for wanting something different? Just cause you personally or a friend had a bad experience with ALPA doesnt mean everybody else did. Also at least those people are trying to do something to help, unlike you guys. If you hate ALPA so much then join the Teamsters drive. Do something other then attack others who are trying to change their airline for the better. You know the sad part is that you guys keep living in the past holding on to your beloved TWA or Eastern airlines. Those airlines are long gone and in the past. Time to look towards the future.
 

CFIT

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The finance report, including the projected 2008 and 2009 annual dues collected, is available on the log in section of alpa.org

ALPA members can use their member number and password!

Obviously I don't have access to that information, but I figure that total dues assessment is around 50 to 55 million a year.

Is that a close guess?
 
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Whataburger

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For the people who are bashing ALPA can you really blame the pilots at Airtran for wanting something different? Just cause you personally or a friend had a bad experience with ALPA doesnt mean everybody else did. Also at least those people are trying to do something to help, unlike you guys. If you hate ALPA so much then join the Teamsters drive. Do something other then attack others who are trying to change their airline for the better. You know the sad part is that you guys keep living in the past holding on to your beloved TWA or Eastern airlines. Those airlines are long gone and in the past. Time to look towards the future.
It's actually refreshing to see a pilot group make a bold move to help their cause. I know nothing about AirTran's current union, but it's unfortunate that the the best union to join is the highest "F."
 
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