FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ALLIED PILOTS ASSOCIATION TERMS PLANS FOR LOW-COST CARRIER IBERIA EXPRESS “CORROSIVE,” URGES “COURSE CHANGE”
Fort Worth, Texas (Nov. 9, 2011)—The Allied Pilots Association (APA), certified collective bargaining agent for the 10,000 pilots of American Airlines (NYSE: AMR), voiced support for Spanish pilots’ union SEPLA, which has objected to plans for a low-cost airline called Iberia Express.
“Our SEPLA colleagues have indicated that Iberia Express directly contravenes the Iberia-British Airways merger agreement between the pilots and management,” said APA President Captain Dave Bates. “We therefore urge Iberia management and the International Airlines Group to initiate an immediate course change and to comply with the terms of their agreement with SEPLA.
“Breaching the letter and spirit of a negotiated agreement does not bode well for the labor-management relationship at Iberia,” Bates said. “Likewise, any plan predicated on the outsourcing of good middle-class jobs from the mainline carrier will have a further corrosive effect.
“As we have all seen, the most successful airlines have demonstrated conclusively the value of fully engaging every employee,” he said. “Outsourcing stands in diametric opposition to that proven approach.”
International Airlines Group, the company created through the merger of Iberia and British Airways, has characterized Iberia Express as an intended competitor for budget carriers such as Ryanair and EasyJet on short- and medium-haul routes.
American Airlines, Iberia and British Airways are members of the oneworld Alliance.
Founded in 1963, the Allied Pilots Association—the largest independent pilot union in the U.S.—is headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas. APA represents the 10,000 pilots of American Airlines (NYSE: AMR), including 649 pilots not yet offered recall from furlough. The furloughs began shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. Also, several hundred American Airlines pilots are on full-time military leave of absence serving in the armed forces. The union’s Web site address is www.alliedpilots.org. American Airlines is the nation’s largest international passenger carrier and fifth-largest cargo carrier.