elite wrote: ↑
Wed Dec 04, 2019 9:33 am
Ah, insult the opponent into giving up approach?! A product of the generation of social media; those who lack the social skills to actually engage people into a respectable debate? Perhaps also one of the ones that through threw a hissy fit and banned WestJet pilots into the jumpseat?!
Please accept my apology for the insult. I was back from a red-eye and frustrated.
Encore pilots have always been welcome in my jumpseat. I don't like that there were previously a few reported instances of Encore pilots denying WestJet pilots from the jumpseat. However, after speaking with former co-workers who are now at Encore, I can't completely blame Encore pilots for being upset. For many of them the impact of not having the seniority that they were promised is in the range of hundreds of thousands of dollars. I would not call being upset for possibly losing hundreds of thousands of dollars throughout the course of a career as a "hissy fit".
The frustration I have with your post is that your understanding of history is wrong. Regional airlines flourished in the United States with the deregulation of the airline industry in 1978. Prior to deregulation, airlines were limited on what routes they could fly and what fares they could charge. That changed after 1978. One of the major changes in the industry was that larger carriers turned to the hub and spoke network flying and then created changes. Allegheny Commuter was one of the first regional airlines that flew under a larger carrier. What's disappointing is that back in the late 70s, the pilot unions didn't foresee that vast expansion that mainline airlines would use regional airlines for and gave up their exclusivity of flying for the birth of the modern day scope clause.
Hindsight is 20/20, but this is one of the most disappointing bargaining decisions in history. It has allowed airlines to whipsaw pilots and compete on lowest cost structures!!!
Fast forward to more recent US airline history, Compass Airlines was originally started in 2007 as a compromise between Northwest Airlines and ALPA. Northwest was in an awful financial position. It wanted ALPA to give on its scope clause to permit 76 seat jets. The pilot union agreed on the condition that Northwest pilots could flow down in the event of a furlough, and Compass pilots could flow up to Northwest. Let me repeat: the flow agreement was put in to benefit pilots!!!
If it were primarily up to the airline, Northwest would have started an entire new regional airline and paid the pilots a pittance. It is amazing how quickly people forget that regional airlines in the US in the mid 2000s paid FOs $22,000 a year and had no problem attracting pilots. It made perfect sense for major airlines to have 50% of their fleets made up of regional jets where pilots were paid 50 cents on the dollar compared to their mainline pilots.
Separate B scales and WAWCON for regional airlines is the SINGLE BIGGEST REASON FOR LOW PILOT SALARIES IN NORTH AMERICA!!! You do not have a solid grasp of the history of the airline industry if you think that a flow agreement will hurt WAWCON in the long run.
I have heard some of my WestJet colleagues say that if they vote NO to the PTA that the company will have to improve working conditions at Encore to attract pilots. This may be true in the short term. But all my former colleagues that went to Encore did so because they eventually want to work at WestJet and the company was not hiring at the time. They were fine flying a turboprop for a bit, but the move was to fly a jet. Too bad, so sad? times change, right?
DO you think Encore pilots will all stay if we screw them over again? They'll leave for AC, Transat, Sunwing, Cargojet, Morningstar, SkyRegional and.... wait for it.... Swoop. Swoop has delayed my career progression already, but why wouldn't an Encore pilot decide to go to Swoop if we take away their seniority? Ya, that's exactly what I want...... 500 well trained pilots wanting to staff Swoop and help it grow because they don't have better options and they're pissed at us. Talk about history repeating itself!! Right back to pilots whipsawing each other again. Swoop has 9 aircraft. They can go to 30 without any increase in fleet size at WestJet.
I am skeptical that you really are "on the sidelines". Having a seniority transfer agreement between a regional airline and a mainline airline is the single best way to have pilot groups pulling in the same direction to prevent whipsawing in the future. I personally think having Swoops WAWCON on OUR former planes is awful for our groups. Let's not make it so Swoop becomes a more attractive option to the Encore pilots. Voting No to this PTA will bite us in the ass.