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US Airways Pilots Sue Counterparts at American

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US Airways Pilots Sue Counterparts at American

US Airways Pilots Sue Counterparts at American
March 05
09:35 2014

MIAMI — US Airways pilots are suing their counterparts at American Airlines in an attempt to settle a dispute over how to merge seniority lists. The pilots are not seeking money, but federal arbitration to settle the matter.

Specifically the pilots are trying to get the courts to utilize the provisions in the McCaskill-Bond law. The law, passed in 2007, forces the two sides to come up with a “fair and equitable” seniority list integration via arbitration. So far, the different pilot groups involved have been unable to agree.

The Allied Pilots Association said the parties involved had an agreement last year on a process for combining seniority lists. However, the Allied Pilots Association accuses US Airways pilots of trying to break that deal.

Seniority is exceptionally important in the world pilots. It often governs everything from career progression to vacation time to rate of pay. Consequently disputes such as this are not novel. Last week, six ex-Continental Airlines pilots sued their union, the Air Line Pilots Association, claiming that the union failed to represent the group sufficiently in seniority list integration talks with United (in short, they want a do-over). The merger of America West and US Airways in 2005 saw a similar spat, which resulted in lawsuits and arbitration, only to see disillusioned US Airways pilots back away completely and create their own new union.

Further, in 2007, former TWA employees bore the brunt of the economic downturn at American when it came time for furlough notices. During the integration of the TWA and American, TWA employees were placed toward the bottom. The McCaskill-Bond law that US Airways pilots are attempting to access was created in response to the TWA/American situation.

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