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Fri, May 19, 2023

FedEx Pilots Authorize Strike

A Rising Tide Lifts all Aircraft

On 17 May 2023, FedEx Express pilots represented by ALPA voted overwhelmingly in support of a strike—were such an action forced by FedEx management and deemed necessary by union leaders.

All but one-percent of the 97-percent of FedEx Express pilots who participated in the vote authorized union leaders to call a strike—if needed—for purpose of achieving a new contractual agreement with FedEx. Negotiations with FedEx management commenced in May 2021 and the pilots’ contract became amendable in November 2021. Protracted and fruitless, the negotiations stalled and entered mediation in October 2022. In point of fact, the contractual provisions and benefits under which FedEx pilots are currently working were negotiated in 2015.

FedEx ALPA Master Executive Council chair Captain Chris Norman stated: “Today, FedEx pilots spoke with one unified voice and sent a clear message to management that we are willing to go the distance to secure a new contract. Now is the time for FedEx to deliver a new contract that reflects the value we bring to FedEx as highly skilled professionals who deliver FedEx’s Purple Promise every day. Our goal is to reach an agreement, not to strike. The ball is in management’s court, and it’s time for the Company to get serious at the bargaining table and invest in our pilots.”

Prior to a strike taking place, the U.S. National Mediation Board must determine additional mediatory efforts would prove unproductive, and offer the dispute’s parties opportunity to seek arbitration. In the event either side declines arbitration, the dispute enters a thirty-day “cooling off” period, after which the parties may engage in self-help—which is to say a strike may be called by the union or a lockout initiated by management. In either instance, FedEx loses.



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