Contract Negotiations Will Go To Arbitration
The International Brotherhood of
Teamsters' Airline Division announced Tuesday that negotiations
with Atlas Air Worldwide (AAWW), the holding company of Atlas Air
and Polar Air Cargo Worldwide, have ended without a collective
bargaining agreement. The Teamsters and AAWW have been in
negotiations to merge the carrier's existing contracts for nearly
"Instead of reaching an agreement with its pilots, AAWW
management has decided to let an arbitrator determine the core
provisions in the pilots' contract," Capt. David Bourne, Teamsters'
Airline Division Director, said in a news release. "Consequently,
an arbitrator will impose contract terms affecting the rules for
airline acquisitions, mergers, asset disposition, marketing
agreements, joint ventures, foreign operations, subcontracting,
salary, health insurance, retirement, profit sharing and contract
Approximately 800 Teamsters-represented pilots employed by Atlas
Air and Polar Air Cargo Worldwide operate the world's largest fleet
of modern Boeing 747 all-cargo aircraft serving clients in Europe,
the Middle East and Asia. The express unit of German-based DHL has
a 49 percent stake in Polar Air Cargo Worldwide.
Bourne asserts that pilot morale is at an all time low at
Atlas and Polar. "The company is one of the most profitable
airlines in the world, in part, because of lucrative government
contracts," he said, "but management is putting its past
success at risk by refusing to enter into a fair contract with
their hardworking pilots who are unified in their demands."
Under the terms of an agreement between the Teamsters and AAWW
management, all unresolved contract sections must be resolved by
final and binding arbitration with no judicial review. The
arbitration hearing is scheduled to begin in October.