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United Pilots ‘Overwhelmingly’ Reject New Airline Contract

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United Airlines aircraft are seen at Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) on July 1, 2022 in Newark, New Jersey. Hundreds of flights were canceled across the US ahead of July Fourth weekend.

Photo: Jeenah Moon (Getty Images)

The negotiations between the United Airline pilots union and the airline will continue after pilots “overwhelmingly” rejected a tentative agreement that would have given them about a 15 percent raise over the next year and a half.

CNBC reports that nearly 10,000 of United’s 14,000 pilots participated in the vote, and 94 percent of them (about 9,400) voted against the agreement.

The Air Line Pilots Association said that the tentative agreement “fell short of the industry-leading contract United pilots have earned and deserve after leading the airline through the pandemic and back to profitability.”

Now, the union says it will organize informal pickets to get United to come back to the table.

“Unfortunately, management has now taken a wait-and-see approach to negotiations instead of leading the industry forward,” United’s chapter of ALPA said in a statement.

United defended its position, saying it is working with the ALPA on a new, industry-leading agreement that would include higher pay rates among other “enhancements.”

This is just the latest in a continuing saga of pilots’ unions versus airlines. CNBC reports that multiple unions have struggled to reach agreements for new contracts with their airlines. For the most part, they are seeking raises and better scheduling as airlines return to profitability following the pandemic slump.

Recently, Delta pilots voted to authorize a potential strike if an agreement between their union and the airline couldn’t be made.

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