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Old 02-24-2016, 05:12 AM   #1  
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Default Why We Need To Be Talking About ALPA

LinkedIn article by former APA VP Neil Roghair. Spot on!


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https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/why-w...a-neil-roghair (former APA VP)

Why We Need To Be Talking About ALPA


When I recently stepped down as Vice President of the Allied Pilots Association (APA), many were surprised (or even a bit stunned) that my parting message strongly suggested a debate among American pilots about returning to ALPA (the Air Line Pilots Association).

After giving so many years of full-time service to APA, it is a bold statement to suggest that we can do better by sun-setting our current organization and rejoining the organization we fought so hard to leave over five decades ago.

But things change and we need to recognize just how much things have changed. We need to see that today’s environment presents us with new and unique opportunities to better the profession that we haven’t seen in decades. I can’t possibly cover everything that needs to be discussed in one short message, but I’d like to expand on a few initial points.

AA PILOTS ARE IN A POSITION TO RETURN TO A DOMINANT AND VERY INFLUENTIAL LEADERSHIP ROLE AT ALPA

If we returned to ALPA, AA pilots would represent 20.4% of ALPA membership. Mainline pilots would comprise 77.6% of ALPA and the regional and Canadian pilots would represent just 22.4% of ALPA. The current ALPA demographics are posted at the end of this message.

ALPA DUES COULD BE REDUCED TO ROUGHLY 1.25%

ALPA currently runs on a 1.95% dues structure, which is almost double the APA dues structure. But if AA pilots returned to ALPA, it would be such a game-changing event, that the ALPA dues structure system-wide could be reduced to something between APA’s “peacetime” dues of 1 percent and our “wartime” Section 6 negotiations rate of 1.5%. The ALPA dues structure is not a reason to oppose going back to ALPA. We would be paying something in the neighborhood of what we pay today.

TO UNDO THE SCOPE MISTAKES OF THE PAST DECADES WE NEED TO WORK WITH REGIONAL PILOT GROUPS, NOT AGAINST THEM

Airline industry demographics and economics used to work hugely in management’s favor, but not anymore. Regional carriers are cancelling service to smaller cities as they are unable to find pilots to fill their cockpits. Regional carriers are raising pay rates, bonuses and mainline flow-through provisions as they struggle to recruit pilots.

APA has been working aggressively behind the scenes to encourage regional pilot groups to use these current leverage points to help all of us return flying to the mainline. The days when regional pilots fought for flying at our expense are gone. The retirement demographics are so strong that the regional pilots probably see it more clearly than we do.

NO ONE WANTS TO BE FLYING AT THE MAINLINE MORE THAN THE REGIONAL PILOTS.
IF THERE IS ANYONE ELSE WHO TRULY WANTS THESE FLIGHTS TO BE FLOWN BY MAINLINE OPERATIONS, IT'S OUR PASSENGERS

We can influence and shape this macro-trend much more if we are in a position of ALPA leadership, as opposed to remaining independent and struggling for relevance and influence in this fight.

For perspective, there are currently 12,500 regional ALPA pilots. Over the next six years, the major carriers need to hire over 14,000 mainline pilots, just to replace age 65 retirements. In the next ten years, the number grows to 25,000 mainline pilots needed at the six largest carriers, which is DOUBLE the current number of ALPA regional pilots.

We have a strong tailwind on this issue, which is only going to get stronger. We need to seize the day and do everything possible to return flying back to mainline operations as rapidly and as permanently as possible.

THE BOTTOM-LINE IS THAT THE TOP TWO REASONS GENERALLY GIVEN FOR NOT GOING BACK TO ALPA ......ARE INVALID.

If we were to return to ALPA, their overall dues structure would be dramatically lower than it is today and somewhere in the range of today’s APA structure of 1%-1.5%. We are in a strong position to negotiate this with ALPA and their membership would enthusiastically embrace this outcome.
With AA pilots at ALPA, regional pilots would comprise just over 20% of ALPA membership and we would be in a much stronger position to help get that flying back to the mainlines where it belongs. Returning regional flying to the mainlines is NOT a conflict of interests. It is an ALIGNMENT of interests.

LASTLY, MAJOR STRATEGIC VISIONS FOR THE PILOT PROFESSION, SUCH AS OVERHAULING THE RAILWAY LABOR ACT, CHANGING HOW AIRLINE COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENTS ARE TREATED IN BANKRUPTCY AND PURSUING THE ELUSIVE GOAL OF A NATIONAL SENIORITY LIST WILL NEVER HAPPEN IF PILOT GROUPS REMAIN LARGELY SPLINTERED AND FOCUSED ALMOST EXCLUSIVELY ON PAROCHIAL ISSUES

I plan to post additional messages from time to time on specific experiences I had while at APA which convince me more than ever that we need to be having this discussion. Thanks to all who have enthusiastically joined in the debate.

If you are interested in being a supporter of entering into exploratory talks with ALPA, we need good people from both inside and outside the APA building, and from every corner of the system, to roll up their sleeves and take this conversation to the next level. You can help by sharing this message with your fellow pilots and elected representatives and telling them how you feel. Feel free to send a connection request here on LinkedIn if you wish to receive future messages on this subject.

FedEx pilots once left ALPA but concluded it was in their best interests to return. We can make the same bold, thoughtful and effective decision. The worst mistake we could make right now is not having this debate at all.

Neil



=================

Current ALPA demographics*

Mainline Carriers (Pax and Cargo) - 37,672 pilots at ten carriers

Delta - 12,900
United - 12,500
FedEx – 4,300
JetBlue - 3,200
Alaska - 1,700
Spirit - 1,305
Virgin America - 630
Hawaiian - 627
Sun Country - 270
Air Transport Int'l – 240

Regional Carriers - 12,350 pilots at eleven carriers

ASA/ExpressJet – 3,600
Envoy - 2,000
Endeavor - 1,550
PSA - 1,200
Mesa - 1,050
Air Wisconsin - 860
Trans States - 700
Compass - 690
Piedmont - 450
ComutAir - 200
Island Air - 50

Canadian Carriers - 2400 pilots at seven carriers
Jazz - 1,400
Air Transat - 415
Wasaya - 200
First Air - 145
Calm Air - 103
Bearskin - 75
Kelowana - 75

If American pilots were part of ALPA, mainline pilots would comprise approximately 77.6% of ALPA membership (51,172 of 65,922)

If American pilots were part of ALPA, AA Pilots would comprise approximately 20.4% of the total ALPA membership (13,500 of 65,922)



*from numbers currently posted on airlinepilotcentral.com
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Old 02-24-2016, 08:48 AM   #2  
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ALPA is a money sucking blob.

Zero leadership.

Try to find just one quote where the ALPA president talks of restoring our concessions from bankruptcy.

Canoll makes sick money. He is a management tool. As soon as he leaves he will go to work for Moak.

Don't be fools.
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Old 02-24-2016, 10:36 AM   #3  
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Ok then... Because APA has consistently delivered ILCs compared to DAL and UAL and is the one Union all airlines strive to belong to?

Not.

We're considering a switch due to the sub standard contracts we've suffered under APA for decades.

ALPA is far from perfect but it's a step in the right direction towards bringing all airline pilots in under one umbrella union..which is exactly what needs to happen as we have the ME3 and other huge threats in the not-so-distant future.

If Canoll makes sick money, good for him. WE, the AA pilots, also want to make sick money...and work rules...and profit sharing. All these are items our ALPA affiliated DAL and UAL fellow pilots currently enjoy. We have lagged behind them ever since we split from ALPA.
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Old 02-24-2016, 11:04 AM   #4  
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Great article, and spot on. I am 100% in favor of joining ALPA and unifying the profession even more. Makes no sense to have several fractured independent unions.
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Old 02-24-2016, 11:26 AM   #5  
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Skywest is not ALPA...
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Old 02-24-2016, 11:28 AM   #6  
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As an AWA pilot, I've always felt ALPA sold us out. I'd be willing to bet most of my LUS coworkers feel the same way. With that said, I think it would be wise to at least consider the benefits of rejoining ALPA. We can't change the past but we can control our future and if there's a chance it looks better with ALPA, I'm willing to hear them out. If we remain unconvinced, than we can stick with APA and ALPA can pound sand.
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Old 02-24-2016, 11:34 AM   #7  
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I'm glad to hear you guys are talking about this.

Believe me, there is almost no one, of any background or personality, that doesn't have some complaint against ALPA over the years. ALPA has made me see red more than once. However I would strongly endorse the idea of all of us (SWAPA too!) joining together under the same roof.

This is our best hope for preserving the profession against outside forces into the future.

The process, I believe, would be that of a merger of the unions. Which would give American pilots a voice in how the unions would be combined.

I realize that this is a big step that would involve burying a lot of hatchets. But, 15,000 American pilots can have a lot of power to make this profession stronger if we are all united.
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Old 02-24-2016, 12:16 PM   #8  
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Quote:
LASTLY, MAJOR STRATEGIC VISIONS FOR THE PILOT PROFESSION, SUCH AS OVERHAULING THE RAILWAY LABOR ACT, CHANGING HOW AIRLINE COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENTS ARE TREATED IN BANKRUPTCY AND PURSUING THE ELUSIVE GOAL OF A NATIONAL SENIORITY LIST WILL NEVER HAPPEN IF PILOT GROUPS REMAIN LARGELY SPLINTERED AND FOCUSED ALMOST EXCLUSIVELY ON PAROCHIAL ISSUES
This guy gets it.
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Old 02-24-2016, 02:40 PM   #9  
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Originally Posted by BoilerUP View Post
Skywest is not ALPA...

It's the largest non-union airline in the United States. And management pays f&h MILLIONS to help keep it that way. And it's not for the pilots' benefit that pay those consultation fees.
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Old 02-24-2016, 02:44 PM   #10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Monkeyfly View Post
The process, I believe, would be that of a merger of the unions. Which would give American pilots a voice in how the unions would be combined.

Which could include a reduction in ALPA dues rate as a condition of merging.
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