Airlines has announced that its pilots, represented
by the Air Line Pilots Association International, have agreed to a new
contract with the carrier. Sixty-three percent of the pilots’ voting ratified
the agreement.“Our pilots have played an extraordinary leadership role
in helping Northwest achieve the cost reductions necessary to restructure the
airline successfully. They led the way
with the December 2004 bridge agreement. With today’s vote, our pilots and
their families have made another significant sacrifice to help secure
Northwest’s future,” said Doug Steenland, Northwest Airlines president and
chief executive officer.
“ALPA’s contract ratification is a major step in ensuring
the long-term success of our airline. We look forward to continuing to work
with ALPA’s leaders as we reshape Northwest going forward. In particular, we
will be working with our pilots to help secure expeditious passage of pension
legislation that would secure the pensions that our pilots have earned and
deserve,” Steenland added.
To date, in addition to ALPA, Northwest has reached agreements
on permanent wage and benefit reductions with the Aircraft Technical Support
Association (ATSA), the Transport Workers Union of America (TWU), and the
Northwest Airlines Meteorologists Association (NAMA). Also, the airline’s
International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers-represented
customer service and reservations staff employees have ratified a new contract,
providing for permanent wage and benefit reductions. In addition, two rounds of
salaried and management employee pay
and benefit cuts have been implemented and the needed aircraft maintenance
employee labor cost savings have been achieved.
Since beginning its restructuring process in September of last
year, Northwest has remained focused on its plan to realize $2.5 billion in
annual business improvements in order to return the company to profitability on
a sustained basis. The restructuring plan continues to be centered on three
goals: resizing and optimization of the airline’s fleet to better serve
Northwest’s markets; realizing competitive labor and non-labor costs; and
restructuring and recapitalization of the airline’s balance sheet.