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Continental Pilots Say No Deal On Pay, Benefits

Posted in Cockpit Crew News, Continental AirlinesNo comments

The pilots’ union at Continental Airlines Inc. said Wednesday they have reached tentative agreements on parts of a new contract but not on major issues including pay and benefits.

The union and the company have been negotiating since July 2007 on a deal to update the current contract, which became amendable on Wednesday.
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The union wants to recover wage concessions made in 2005, which it estimated at more than $200 million per year.

Under federal law, labor contracts in the airline industry don’t expire, and there are legal obstacles before workers can legally go on strike.

Continental has nearly 5,000 pilots, who are represented by the Air Line Pilots Association. Union officials said they have agreements on eight sections of the contract but dozens more are unsettled.

“Our pilots have been working long enough under the concessions of our current contract,” said Jay Pierce, leader of the Continental group within ALPA. “The givebacks that were designed to help keep Continental out of bankruptcy were a loan to secure our futures … and now it is past due.”

Julie King, a spokeswoman for Houston-based Continental, the nation’s fourth-largest airline, said the company would “continue to work closely with our pilot group, as we do with all of our employee groups.”

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