American Airline Pilots Set Demands, A Warn Of A Strike
Jan 9,1997, FORT WORTH, Texas, American Airlines pilots met on Thursday to draw up new labor demands and warned of possible strike action if the carrier refuses to sweeten a contract deal. The Union early this week had rejected American Airlines offer. On Wednesday, more than half of its APA members had voted against a tentative labor contract with the airline.
This contract would have given the pilots a 3 percent wage increase this year and an additional 2 percent in 1999. "The pilots overwhelmingly said they want several changes to the contract or they will go out on strike. The union's five-member negotiating board, which struck the deal rejected by rank-and-file members, stepped down. A replacement board is to be named.
The APA's rejection of a labor contract agreed last September after two years of tortuous negotiations effectively put American Airlines' growth plans on hold. The airline, which is owned by Fort Worth, Texas-based AMR Corp , last November pledged to buy 103 jets from Boeing Co and take out options on 527 more in one of the biggest commercial airplane orders in history. American Airlines Pilots rejected the tentative agreement primarily because of a clause that would have allowed the airline to buy regional jets for its commuter carrier American Eagle, which currently operates only turboprop aircraft. In return for that concession, American Airlines initially agreed to drop plans to set up a low-fare short-haul unit in which pilots would have taken a pay cut of up to 30 percent.
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