Allegiant CEO Maurice Gallagher, long an outspoken opponent of airline unionization, is living his worst dream: his pilots are represented by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. Pilots were prepared to strike on April 2, but on April 1 a U.S. district court judge in Las Vegas issued a temporary restraining order. A hearing is scheduled for Friday, April 10.
The commonalities and challenges that bind the largest professional pilot groups who fly on behalf of fractional ownership programs focused talks at the 2015 Fractional Pilots Summit in Columbus earlier this week. Participants received a briefing from Teamsters Representative Rick Dubinsky regarding the revitalized effort to organize the Flexjet pilot group. The Teamsters-led drive was launched to protect the interests of the pilots employed by Flight Options and Flexjet.
Pilots with Travel Management Company (TMC) voted overwhelmingly, 120-57, today in favor of Teamster representation. After the National Mediation Board (NMB) certifies the election, about 200 TMC pilots will become members of Teamsters Local 1108 in Richmond Heights, Ohio, and join the more than 75,000 airline industry workers currently represented by the Teamsters Airline Division.
The union that represents the 400 pilots of Las Vegas-based Allegiant Air say pilots are leaving the airline at accelerated rates to work for companies that are offering higher pay and benefits. The Airline Professionals Association Teamsters Local 1224, based in Wilmington, Ohio, is surveying pilots that have left the airline.
Pilot attrition is accelerating at Allegiant Air as pilots, even senior captains with many years invested, have been leaving in increasing numbers for companies luring them with better and safer operations, better working conditions, better schedules and increased compensation and benefits packages.
On Tuesday, the U.S. District Court in Nevada granted a preliminary injunction in favor of Teamster pilots at Allegiant Air, finding that Allegiant unilaterally changed provisions in the existing agreement during bargaining in violation of RLA status quo requirements. Allegiant was ordered to reinstate the lost medical program, comply with parental leave policy, and address scheduling issues due to the unilateral implementation of a preferential bidding system.