Spirit News August 13th

enigma

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http://www.freep.com/money/business/spirit13e_20050813.htm

AVIATION LABOR: Spirit's pilots have OT issues



August 13, 2005









BY JEWEL GOPWANI
[font=helvetica,arial]FREE PRESS BUSINESS WRITER[/font]



The pilots union at Spirit Airlines Inc. said Friday the airline is short-staffed and has been forcing pilots to work on their days off without appropriate pay.



Five leaders of the union offered a vote of no confidence in Spirit's management, saying the company has treated pilots unfairly, and in some instances violates terms of the contract. In essence, the union contends the airline should be recalling laid-off pilots instead of requiring overtime for active pilots.



A spokeswoman for Miramar, Fla.-based Spirit Airlines said it was unable to respond to the union's claims late Friday.



Since the airline furloughed 15 pilots in May, the airline has asked pilots to work on their days off, said Mike OConnell, communications chairman for Spirit's pilots union.



Specifically, OConnell said, airline management has been calling pilots between 10 p.m. and 8 a.m. for overtime on their days off, which violates its contract.



"They wouldn't be needing to call us if the furloughs were back," OConnell, said.



The union contends that Spirit hasn't been paying its pilots the appropriate compensation for the extra hours, OConnell said. He also said pilots have filed grievances for other issues regarding pay.



"All we want is the company to abide by what it said it would do when it signed the contract," OConnell said.



The union concerns come at a time when Spirit -- Detroit Metro Airport's second-largest carrier behind Northwest Airlines -- has had a string of good news.



Last month, the company announced a new $100-million investment from its majority owner Los Angeles-based Oaktree Capital Management LLC and New York-based minority partner Goldman Sachs Credit Partners LP.



The money will help Spirit acquire 35 new Airbus planes to replace its aging fleet and transform its image in the industry into a modern low-cost carrier.



Contact JEWEL GOPWANI at 313-223-4550 or gopwani@freepress.com.
 

enigma

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Here it is, straight from the horses mouth.

FT. LAUDERDALE, FLA -- The Master Executive Council (MEC) for pilots at "Spirit", a unit of the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l. (ALPA) today voted unanimously to express “no confidence” in the present "Spirit" management.

“This ‘no confidence’ vote is an expression of our total exasperation and frustration with Spirit management’s willful failure over the course of many months to abide by our collective bargaining agreement,” said MEC Chairman, Capt. Vince Heist. “This has been compounded by management’s actions in harassing members who have taken issue with their failure to honor their obligations to our pilots. We have reached this sad state of affairs in which compliance with the contract is the exception rather than the rule” he said.

Thirty months ago, the pilot group signed a concessionary contract with management that allowed for unprecedented growth in an airline environment of instability and furloughs. Since then, numerous contract violations have led to an abundance of grievances increasing labor unrest. Pilots entered into negotiations with management in April 2005 to resolve contract violations and agreed to discuss management's issues. Since that meeting management has made no attempt to address these problems and continues to willfully violate and abuse the pilots in the normal course of their flying and time off. In addition, the company has maintained the airline at a level below adequate staffing, forcing pilots to fly on their days off while fellow pilots are on furlough. One top executive even informed several pilots that the reason for furloughing was because the pilot union turned down pay cuts in late 2004.

“We intend to take all lawful measures to protect our crewmembers as well as ensure that our customers are properly served. In most operations, management works with the union to achieve these ends. Unfortunately, at Spirit, management is the primary obstacle,” Heist said.

"Spirit"’ headquarters are in Ft. Lauderdale, which, together with Detroit, are its main hubs. It is one of the few profitable airlines as of August 2004, recently reporting record traffic for June 2005. The airline has received $100 million of new financing led by Oaktree Capital Management, LLC and Goldman Sachs Credit Partners L.P. With nearly 120 departures per day to cities throughout the U.S., Mexico and the Caribbean, "Spirit" is the largest privately held airline in the United States.

ALPA is the bargaining agent for the nearly 400 pilots at "Spirit". Founded in 1931, ALPA represents approximately 64,000 pilots at 41 airlines in the United States and Canada. Visit the ALPA website at www.alpa.org.
 

enigma

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I realize that Spirit is not a major, and I'll probably post this in the general section later, but. This is a relevant issue for anyone flying for any narrowbody , or larger, carrier. Spirit pilots are among the, if not the, lowest paid narrowbody pilots in the business. If Spirit ownership succeeds in beating us down, the bar will be lowered for everyone. I don't have firsthand knowledge, but rumor has it that ALPA national is committed to keeping us from being forced lower. Wish us luck, your future earnings may somewhat depend on it.

Thanks,
enigma
 

WillowRunVortex

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enigma said:
If Spirit ownership succeeds in beating us down, the bar will be lowered for everyone. I don't have firsthand knowledge, but rumor has it that ALPA national is committed to keeping us from being forced lower. Wish us luck, your future earnings may somewhat depend on it.

Thanks,
enigma
Unfortunately, You guys are ALPA. ALPA these days is,,,well,,,"woerth-less".
 

ironspud

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enigma said:
I don't have firsthand knowledge, but rumor has it that ALPA national is committed to keeping us from being forced lower.
ALPA is committed to ... ALPA. That's all.
 

B6Driver

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"ALPA is committed to ... ALPA. That's all."

Time to pull the plug on our good friends in Herndon, VA
 

asaflyer

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a few
WillowRunVortex said:
Unfortunately, You guys are ALPA. ALPA these days is,,,well,,,"woerth-less".


That's great!! Five bucks to the guy who can make a sticker that says "WOERTH-LESS".
 

AA717driver

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Duffy, Babbitt and Woerth.

Who's dragging down the profession? From Security Screening for pilots to random drug testing to 1113 ALPA hasn't lifted a finger to stop the degradation of the profes... er, excuse me, JOB.

Say what you will about the AW guys in MIA, for a minimum wage, high school educated screener to be sniffing our breath as we go through security is an outrage. Same with them rifiling through our underwear to see if I represent a safety hazzard. :mad:

Unfortunately, the time to draw the line in the sand and retain the title of "profession" for our line of work passed long ago. Now it's just a job and it's every man for himself.

Thanks ALPA! Good luck Spirit. Thanks for having the dignity to say "NO!".TC
 

Jeff Helgeson

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Boxers or briefs?

AA717driver said:
Same with them rifiling through our underwear to see if I represent a safety hazzard. :mad:
I didn't think you owned a pair! Just goes to show we shouldn't be so quick to judge one another.

Good post TC
 

DoubleOverHead

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Our phones ring off the hook for junior manning for the airbus. Personally, I get about 5 calls a day to help. All on days off. I already have an 85 hour hard line. I dont get it. I hope the rest of you guys in the industry dont have this problem. Its almost like harassment.

The publicity is good though!!!
 

RoughAir

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Spirit, I hope you guys get something from ALPO, they didn't help us ex-Emery pilots at all. In fact, they screwed us with no lube.
 

GogglesPisano

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enough
AA717driver said:
for a minimum wage, high school educated screener to be sniffing our breath as we go through security is an outrage.
Outrage for us. But every so often some alcoholic tool will try to get away with it and get snagged at a checkpoint -- leading to public outrage (which, unfortunately, is a lot more powerful that pilot outrage.)
 

CosmoKramer

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Pay Concessions of 50%-----$60,000

Working More Days For Less Pay-----$20,000

Retirement Pension Lost----$200,000


Giving 2% of your pay to ALPA-----Woerth-less.....
 

skydan

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Ditto on the ALPA

Ditto on the ALPA they are useless
 
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