FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ALLIED PILOTS ASSOCIATION TERMS QANTAS SITUATION “HIGHLY UNFORTUNATE,” URGES NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT
Fort Worth, Texas (Nov. 2, 2011)—The Allied Pilots Association (APA), certified collective bargaining agent for the 10,000 pilots of American Airlines (NYSE: AMR), characterized the situation at Qantas as “highly unfortunate” following Fair Work Australia’s intervention in a labor-management impasse at the carrier.
“Qantas management brought this highly unfortunate situation on itself by proceeding with plans to outsource mainline workers’ jobs to low-cost offshore subsidiaries,” said APA President Captain Dave Bates. “Any plan predicated on the outsourcing of good middle-class jobs is a recipe for disaster. We support our Qantas colleagues in their efforts to preserve their career prospects.
“The most successful airlines understand the value of actively engaging their employees, and outsourcing jobs runs completely counter to that proven approach,” Bates said. “Accordingly, we urge Qantas management to commit to reaching a negotiated solution with the carrier’s unions for the good of all concerned,” he said.
Fair Work Australia’s intervention followed Qantas CEO Alan Joyce’s Oct. 29 announcement that the airline would lock out engineers, baggage handlers and international pilots beginning at 8 p.m. on Oct. 31. The lockout followed a series of work stoppages by Qantas employees. Fair Work Australia gave both parties 21 days to reach an agreement, and may extend talks another 21 days or initiate a binding arbitration process, which could require several months to complete.
American Airlines and Qantas are both 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.