Court rules for US Airways pilots’ union
Charlotte Business Journal
Friday, June 4, 2010, 5:11pm EDT
The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has reversed a lower federal court ruling that found the US Airline Pilots Association liable in a duty-of-fair-representation lawsuit.
The union represents pilots at US Airways Group Inc., which operates its largest hub at Charlotte/Douglas International Airport.
The U.S. District Court in Arizona had issued an injunction that required the union to bargain for seniority-integration terms based on a previous union’s bargaining proposal.
The latest decision allows the union to freely bargain for the terms of its seniority integration between US Airways pilots and those of the former America West Airline.
US Airways and America West merged in September 2005, with the combined carrier taking the US Airways name. However, the merged companies have been unable to agree on a joint contract for its two pilot groups.
The dispute revolves around seniority issues, which determine compensation, routes flown, captain status and vacation.
The union can now begin collective bargaining on behalf of all US Airways pilots.
The US Airline Pilots Association, based in Charlotte, represents the 5,200 mainline pilots who fly for US Airways.
The Tempe, Ariz.-based carrier (NYSE:LCC) operates 3,000 flights per day to 190 destinations in the Americas and Europe.