NWA/Delta pilots approve joint contract


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Delta, NWA pilot pact approved
Monday August 11, 4:00 pm ET
By Harry R. Weber, AP Business Writer

Delta, Northwest pilots approve joint collective bargaining agreement

ATLANTA (AP) -- Pilots at Delta Air Lines and Northwest Airlines have approved a joint collective bargaining agreement.

Ratification of the agreement has been a key element of Delta's efforts to achieve a smooth integration of the two companies when it acquires Northwest later this year.

Delta's pilots union issued a memo detailing the results Monday, the deadline for rank-and-file pilots of both airlines to vote.

The agreement covers roughly 12,000 pilots of the two airlines.

Of eligible Delta pilots who cast a ballot, 61.74 percent voted in favor of the new agreement, while 86.76 percent of eligible Northwest pilots who cast a ballot voted in favor.

With ratification by both pilot groups, the joint agreement will become effective when the merger between Delta and Northwest closes, which is expected by the end of the year, Delta's pilots union said in a message to its pilots.

The pilots still do not have a deal to integrate their seniority lists, but have agreed to submit to binding arbitration if they cannot come to terms on their own within a certain timeframe. A three-member panel has already been chosen in case arbitration is needed.

Pilots value their seniority because it determines their schedule, the aircraft they fly and layoff protection.



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I read over the summary a few weeks ago and though there might be some things that pilots on the Delta side in particular were not happy about, or things that both sides might not like such as duration of the contract itself, I do not think anything better could be negotiated in this environment with oil prices as they are.

In addition to that I think the merger would either happen or not happen but whether or not the pilot groups agree to something would not change it.