[Top Story] July 23, 2023, 10:19 pm ET. By John McDermott.
One week after United Airlines reached an Agreement in Principle (AIP) for a new $9 billion contract with its pilots, American Airlines has updated its own proposal to match United’s offer. American’s updated proposal added over $1 billion to the contract it proposed this Spring.
American’s new contract matches the pay rates, backpay, sick time, life insurance, and other benefits offered to United pilots, per American Airlines CEO Robert Isom. American’s pilots will begin voting on the updated deal on Monday.
Captain Ed Sicher, the President of the Allied Pilots Association, the union that represents American Airlines pilots, said union leadership will weigh “whether management’s comprehensive proposal is worthy of a membership vote.”
“We’ll return to the bargaining table and do what’s necessary to get to a deal. It just won’t be done quickly,” Isom said. “We run a complex business and any changes to what we agreed to — even small ones — may have a profound impact. Reconsideration of all of these items would take time.”
American was the second legacy carrier in the United States to propose a new contract to its pilots. Across the board, airline pilots have been fighting for years to win new contracts with their companies, but the Covid-19 pandemic gave pilots extra leverage to pressure airlines for more.
Delta Air Lines pilots approved what was at the time an industry-leading deal in March. That gives unions at American, United, and other major carriers additional bargaining power they could use to set the bar for what their own contracts should have been. American proposed pilots a new contract in the spring, and pilots were set to vote on the contract over the summer.
A pilot waves from an American E190 at LaGuardia.
(Photo: AirlineGeeks | William Derrickson)
However, after United’s recent contract proposal outdid…