US Airways Express Pilots Discuss Career Portability

Career portability has long been an issue within the pilot profession, especially at the regional level. As flying is transferred from regional to regional in the mainlines’ eternal pursuit of profits, pilots are often the ones left holding the bags. Those who gain flying may experience a short period of growth, while those who lose flying often experience downgrades, displacements, and/or furloughs.

No longer willing to be used as pawns by senior management teams trying to undercut one another for business, ALPA leaders from the US Airways Express Pilots Alliance (USEPA) met last week in Phoenix to continue exploring methods that would promote career stability and portability within the US Airways Express brand. The group focused its discussions on possible transfers of flying and consolidation scenarios within the regional industry, particularly those that may involve carriers within the US Airways Express system. USEPA is composed of pilots from Air Wisconsin, Mesa, Piedmont, Pinnacle, PSA, and Trans States.

USEPA members have long demonstrated their commitment toward providing a consistent product for US Airways Express that transcends company lines. Several work groups have been established to analyze the carriers’ safety programs, collective bargaining agreements, and industry trends. Ongoing collaboration has focused on improvements to safety, enhancements to contract standards, and job security measures. Each group has passed a resolution to confer in the event that flying is transferred from one USEPA carrier to another.

At the meeting, USEPA members also elected officers to oversee the various work groups and general administration of the alliance. MAG MEC chairman F/O Marcin Kolodziejczyk was reelected chairman; ARW MEC chairman Capt. Richard Swindell was reelected vice chairman; and PDT MEC secretary-treasurer Capt. Peter Nakhoul was elected secretary-treasurer.