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President of ALPA tells regionals to bend over

av8tor19

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Glad national is looking out for us.
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]Fellow Pilot,[/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]On September 6, you received a letter from your former MEC Chairman on his final day in office as the EGL MEC Chairman. His letter expressed many concerns, but focused most on recent negotiations at PSA and on ALPA?s response to your company requests for concessions.[/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]I will not respond to his letter point-by-point; however, I feel that it is important for you to understand the Association?s perspective with regards to the future of the regional industry. [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]It is my belief that our approach should be to always deliberately discuss and understand the world we live in, carefully weigh all the facts and alternatives, and respond thoughtfully and without emotion to ensure that we protect existing work and build career paths for the future of our members.[/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]Today, the Fee-For-Departure (FFD) pilots and their companies are facing intense industry pressure similar to that faced by legacy pilots in the last decade following 9/11. The external factors present during that period resulted in downward modification to collective bargaining agreements. Mainline contracts are returning more closely to an appropriate standard for pay, benefits, work rules and job security provisions. [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]Prolonged economic downturn, consolidation, [/FONT][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]high[/FONT][FONT=Times New Roman,serif] fuel prices, and an increased focus on capacity discipline has led mainlines to constrain affiliate capacity, focus on larger more fuel efficient jets, and reduce the overall costs they pay to FFD carriers. This includes an increased focus on FFD pilot block hour costs. With stagnation in the industry increasing longevity costs at some carriers, there is a wide disparity in pilot block hour costs. [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]The economic factors listed above, along with an increase to the regulated retirement age, have limited career growth opportunities as well as slowed hiring. This resulted in increased longevity among FFD pilots during the past 10 years. At some airlines ? Eagle and Endeavor (formerly Pinnacle), for example ? higher average longevity has been one of the biggest cost drivers in those contracts. Pilot longevity also played a huge role in making Comair financially uncompetitive. [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]While actual Year 15 rates between two carriers may only be as little as 2% apart, one carrier will have much higher average longevity than the other and this longevity component can raise pilot block hour costs from approximately $275 to $350 per hour. [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]Consider these current realities: [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif]? [FONT=Times New Roman,serif]Mainline carriers are now re-equipping their FFD affiliates where large capital expenditures are needed. [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif]? [FONT=Times New Roman,serif]We are in a bargaining cycle where overcapacity exists and mainline airlines have choices over where to allocate this flying. [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif]? [FONT=Times New Roman,serif]Mainline carriers don't need our help to achieve lower block hour costs; they can achieve this simply by using existing lower cost partners to do the flying. [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]I?m confident that consolidation at FFD carriers, an improving economic picture, and more fuel efficient and larger jets will improve our negotiating leverage in the next few years. We will again be in a stronger bargaining position in the near future, just like at mainline carriers and like the robust and favorable bargaining during FFD negotiations between 1999 and 2004.[/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]Normal turnover, increased hiring at mainline carriers as a result of increased number of retirements, and new hiring at the regional level, will eventually lower longevity costs. But what do we do in the meantime? We have tough choices to make about how to protect our members? work at existing carriers, and where necessary, to provide soft landings for pilots at FFD carriers that may not survive rather than force fellow pilots to start over at the bottom of someone else?s seniority list. We also need to continue to pressure the brands to take more responsibility for their affiliates as well.[/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]ALPA pilots have never been afraid of tough choices or hard work to protect our profession. We discuss the issues, weigh the pros and cons, and make decisions that are deliberate and thoughtful rather than emotional. [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif]FFD carrier representatives gathered a few weeks ago and again last week to discuss these issues, and they'll meet again in November to make collective decisions. As always, they will have the support of my office and the Association?s resources to carry out their mission. [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=Calibri,sans-serif][FONT=Times New Roman,serif] Captain L** M****
[/FONT]
[/FONT]
 

Mickey Mouse

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It's laughable. Thank you for posting the letter. Mainline pilots are securing 30% pay increases and regional pilots are being asked to take cuts. They can all kiss my ass. My vote is my power. Pay up or go fuk yourselves.
 

JustaNumber

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What is most striking is the total lack of any comprehensive strategy.

He basically blamed increased longevity as being the main problem, and said that this will correct itself over time, but in the meantime, blah blah blah, we always work together, blah blah blah, tough choices, blah blah blah....

Where is the leadership to lay out a strategy that will stop or limit the whipsaw? Where is the REAL analysis of what is occurring in the regional industry, and WHY?
 

acaTerry

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But I don't suppose they'll ask for an appropriately smaller amount of dues....
 

Freebrd

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Don't know why they call ALPO a union. Those that have Teamsters, any better?
 

Blueridgeflyer

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That's a pretty impotent posture from ALPA national who is duty bound to represent the best interests of its members. Fortunately supply side economics will help provide some relief for those providing lift in service of their mainline partners. They are going to have a tough time filling classes.
 

Freebrd

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I don't think you're going to see that many more jobs at the majors other than attritions & retirements. Many will be able to go but many will not. Regionals will be around until we start kicking sand back in management's face, then regionals will begin to disappear, one by one. Until then, PAY ME! And NO concessions!
 

livin'thesim

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ALPA is an association of unions.

Their power to effect any serious change is actually limited.

The best attorney in the world can't keep you from losing a lawsuit if the jury or court decides against you. Competent representation can only help to minimize the losses in such a case.

The economic factors are arrayed against the regional pilots right now. No one says you have to like it, but if there is another regional willing to price lower, then your opponent is that pilot group that is working for those wages, even if many of those individual pilots did not want to agree to that wage.

Let us take an example from the recent housing crash.

Many people, upset that prices in their neighborhood were plummeting, took to the internet and DEMANDED that something be done. They wanted everyone in their neighborhood to simply refuse to lower their prices, that way buyers would have "no choice" but to pay the price the sellers wanted.

Problem is, why should anyone cooperate? Buyers were not going to be bullied into overpaying. Besides, there were other neighborhoods where no one was suggesting such price-fixing silliness.

It is regrettable that the pilots who fare the worst in pay and QOL are now finding themselves in the hot seat for concessions while legacy pilots are getting large raises. I was a regional guy, so I understand. However, economic forces are like water. They can't be dammed up.

As long as there are multiple unions represented by an association, this exact problem will continue. It is insoluble until there is some sort of national union to which all pilots belong, who negotiate as a single group, and who go on strike all at once.

I suggest that some of you check out a game-theory concept called "prisoner's dilemma".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prisoner's27s_dilemma

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prisoner's_dilemma


In theory, it seems that all we need to do is stand together. But without a universal enforcing effect to keep such unity in place, it won't work.

Now, I know there are a lot of grey heads at the regionals, and to them I give my utmost respect.

However, there are a ton of young pups there too, and many who allow themselves to turn pay and career negotiation into a emotionally-charged bout of name-calling and huffing demands that "something be done".

None of you have it anywhere as bad as your forebears who flew in the days before ALPA, before saftey standards, unions, turbine engines and glideslopes, for that matter.

Man up, please, and accept that right now the tide has turned against your position. You need to remain unemotional and look for opportunities to exploit rather than ways to shout about your grievances.

Did I make you mad? Too bad, you lose again. Until you learn to control the emotion and stay focused on getting what you want, you will get played. Despite their coldness, most management types don't let it get personal. It's all business, all the time. That is why they win so much of the time. Do you really think they want to make your life miserable? That they hate pilots?

Hardly. They don't think about you much differently than any other component of the system. You're a part number.

Know what? That does not bother me that much. Because I have thick skin, good financial instincts, a propensity for saving, and at least two career fallback plans.

In other words, I am my own management. I don't look to my employer as some sort of giant cash teat that I need in order to survive. The #1 thing that most employees do to disempower themselves is to be bad with money, have debt, and be beholden to their employer. Welcome to 21st century serfdom. As long as you are looking to your employer to be your ultimate guarantor, you are positioning yourself as a serf. Want to be a King? Then get to work on it.

Ultimately, you need to take action to secure your life situation, look for opportunities and know how to negotiate and turn poor field position to your advantage as much as you can.

Sometimes you will lose ground, and that is just life. You can complain, or spend that energy looking for work-arounds.

At the end of the day, people who want high wages, big pensions, job security and not to have to ever worry about their safety or security should consider a job in state or local government. There is also always the postal service, Cliffy.

Most human beings on this planet do not have even one of those things, let alone two or three.

Get what you can and stop complaining that you can't have it all.
 
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CesnaCaptn

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So, let's say you were in charge at ALPA. What would you do to stop the downward spiral? You work in a competitive bidding FFD environment. That's not the same as working for a mainline carrier who is minting or pissing away cash.

You can vote no all you want. I'm not saying I wouldn't do the same thing, but that's just ignoring the reality that any regional could get its throat cut by its mainline "partner."
 

livin'thesim

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What would Walt do?

I suppose it matters whether you mean Walt Disney or Walter White, but in the end, both of them would do whatever it takes to come out on top.
 

XPOO

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I'm sure Nevets or one of our other ALPA cheerleaders will be in here to sort this all out for us soon enough.
 

GogglesPisano

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Livin'thesim gets an A+

Livin'thesim: That post was first rate. A rarity around here nowadays.

Fallen on deaf ears so far.


The "commuter," "regional," "express," and now (apparently "FFD") carriers minted money after 9/11. Even with the most inept managements in the business they couldn't fail. Legacies were hemorrhaging, scope clauses were eviscerated, and legacy managements gave their regional partners very lucrative FFD deals.

Now the tide has turned. RJ's have gotten more expensive, passengers are fed up with them, and legacies are (finally) consistently profitable. Mainline pilots finally have showed a little backbone and capitalized on this.

Don't expect ALPA to be able to offset market forces -- they didn't (very much) for mainline pilots after 9/11.

Network, network, go to a job fair and move on.
 
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SkyNation

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President of ALPA tells regionals to bend over

and in a related story, Nevets and his ilk reply

How far?
 

flyboyike

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Now, I know there are a lot of grey heads at the regionals, and to them I give my utmost respect.

However, there are a ton of young pups there too, and many who allow themselves to turn pay and career negotiation into a emotionally-charged bout of name-calling and huffing demands that "something be done".

None of you have it anywhere as bad as your forebears who flew in the days before ALPA, before saftey standards, unions, turbine engines and glideslopes, for that matter.

Man up, please, and accept that right now the tide has turned against your position. You need to remain unemotional and look for opportunities to exploit rather than ways to shout about your grievances.

Good points. Kudos also to Capt Moak for finally saying publicly what most of us have known for years, namely that we're all just furlough fodder one way or the other, there's nothing he can do about it even if he wanted to, and I rather doubt he wants to.

I would have thought someone of his stature, however, would have had something more to say about how to solve the problem the regional pilots are facing besides to basically "just grin and bear it".

Now, I'm 38, so I'm neither a young buck, nor am I a greyhead yet. I have no PIC time to speak of, am on my second regional after two furloughs at the first one, the most recent one permanent. It seems to me Capt Moak would have me do one of three things:

1. Declare my career an abject failure, get out of the industry, in order to give the "young bucks" a chance to move up faster, seeing as they have more time to advance.

2. Wait a "few more years" until we're in a "better negotiating position". By then I'll be in my mid-forties, still at a regional and will be the exact cause of the very longevity problem he blames all the troubles on.

3. Do whatever I can to get out of the regionals and go somewhere (anywhere) that does their own flying, no matter what.

Truth be told, #3 is what I've now been trying to do for years, thus far unsuccessfully, however.
 

Mickey Mouse

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How fking gay. A bunch of mainline pilots and wannabes hanging around the regional's crew lounge trying to convince regional pilots that concessions are a necessary reality. We're not buying your condescending diatribes on "how it is", and "how we should play along". We have heard your bedtime stories before and they gave us nightmares. Run along and play with your little friends on your own regional aircraft, the MD-88, Boeing 717, and Airbus 319. Run along now. Try to jerk someone else off. We're not taking concessions. Yes, it's emotional. When someone tries to take my money and quality of life, I get real emotional.
 

GogglesPisano

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enough
For the record, I don't want to see any pilot group take concessions. None of us operate in a vacuum and all of our contracts affect others.

No pilot profits when another pilot takes a pay cut.
 

CiFIknow

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A real "Union" would have set rates at which workers would not work below, and would take strong action against those who voluntarily chose to.

Assume employee "A" was a pipefitter working for ABC Plumbing and employee "B" was a pipefitter working for XYZ Plumbing, and both were members of Pipefitters Local 1234. ABC Plumbing and XYZ Plumbing both bid on a contract to install some sewer lines. Both employee A and employee B make the same wage. It is up to the company to come up with efficiencies other than wages in order to underbid the other. Employee A and employee B go to the same union meetings even though they work for different companies. They see each other as equals and not as competition.

The bottom line is that we, as pilots, suck at this. I remember back in my law enforcement days when the State Dept. of Natural Resources hired non-union labor to erect a large steel pole building to store their equipment. I was called to investigate who drilled several one-inch holes through every pallet of steel sheeting that was waiting to be put up by non-steelworker's union members. Eventually the DNR hired union workers to finish the job.

ALPA is just an association of groups that are more than willing to screw each other over and pay dues for the privilege of doing so. Oh, but you get a fancy magazine as well.
 
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