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News from ALPA International

March 1, 2012

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The FlightDeck

In This Issue:

New ALPA Leaders Head Home and Get to Work

View a photo slideshow
of the conference

ALPA’s newly elected council representatives and MEC officers literally hit the ground running today as the Association’s annual Leadership Training Conference concluded in Reston, Va.

Unlike most years, the 2012 LTC concluded on March 1—the same day that almost 100 new ALPA leaders began their three-year terms of office. Even as the meeting was wrapping up, most attendees were already preparing to conduct council business once they returned home.

Speakers at the four-day conference told the reps and officers that union service can be hard, exhausting work, but pilot leaders will earn the respect of their members if they focus on planning ahead, setting realistic goals, communicating effectively, and taking full advantage of the Association’s array of resources.

Read more.

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Oppose FFDO Cuts!
President Obama’s 2013 budget blueprint cut the funding for the FFDO program by more than half and also cut $36 million from the FAMS program. This is unsatisfactory and needs to be remedied.

The FFDO program is a critical and cost-efficient airline security program staffed by thousands of fully trained and deputized ALPA pilots who volunteer their time to become qualified FFDOs, contributing personal and professional sacrifices to secure our flight decks. In light of its already barely adequate funding levels, any budget reduction to the FFDO program could very well lead to its ultimate demise. Tell your representative today to oppose cuts to the FFDO and FAMS in the FY2013 budget.

When dealing with terrorism, the deterrent value of an armed presence within the cockpit cannot be overstated. Today, thousands of fully trained and deputized ALPA pilots defend more than 100,000 flight segments per month. ALPA appreciates the inherent difficulties of reducing our federal budget deficit.

Read more.

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Fine-Tuning The FlightDeck
Media analysts have observed that growing numbers of people are turning off their televisions and turning on their computers to get news, view movies, and watch programs like ALPA’s monthly video production, The FlightDeck . Accessible 24/7 at, The FlightDeck features aviation industry news for ALPA members, industry stakeholders, and the traveling public.

With more than a dozen episodes completed, we want to know what you think. Please take a moment to answer five simple questions about The FlightDeck  and let us know how we can make this program better.

Watch The FlightDeck  and take the survey.

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Stay Connected
Stay connected with your union, your profession, and your industry by reading Air Line Pilot magazine and watching monthly episodes of The FlightDeck.

Read about the nationwide expansion set to begin for the Known Crewmember program on page 25 of the March issue of Air Line Pilot magazine.

On the 12th installment of The FlightDeck, get an update on the EU Emissions Trading Scheme talks.

Remember that both Air Line Pilot and The FlightDeck can also be accessed from the members-only portion of the ALPA website at

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Passenger Traffic Still Rising . . .
From today’s IFALPA Daily News, the International Air Transport Association has announced its global traffic results for January, showing a 5.7 percent year-on-year rise in passenger demand, a slight increase on the 5.6 percent increase recorded the previous month. However, January saw an 8 percent decline in air freight compared to the same month in 2011. IATA explained that the Chinese New Year occurring in January, rather than in February as in 2011, “exaggerated the increase in passenger demand and the fall in air freight.”

“The year started with some hopeful news on business confidence. It appears that freight markets have stabilized, albeit at weak levels. And this is having a positive impact on business-related travel. However, airlines face two big risks: rising oil prices and Europe’s sovereign debt crisis. Both are hanging over the industry’s fortunes like the sword of Damocles,” said IATA’s director general and CEO Tony Tyler.

“Running an airline in today’s uncertain economic climate is a tough job. Some well-known names—Spanair and Malev—disappeared in January. At the same time, we know that demand for air travel will grow as the global economy recovers and requires even greater connectivity. The billions of dollars in commercial orders placed at the recent Singapore Airshow demonstrate that airlines are strategically investing to meet that demand with ever-more fuel efficient and environmentally sustainable aircraft,” he added.

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Pilots in Atlanta Area Needed for Georgia Tech Study
The School of Aerospace Engineering at Georgia Tech is seeking glass-qualified airline pilots to participate in simulator-based research into aviation safety with a focus on supporting the pilot in busy air traffic environments. The simulator is simple, based on desktop computers, and any current glass-cockpit Part 121 or Part 135 pilot is welcome.

The research is being conducted at Georgia Tech in Atlanta, and lasts four hours plus breaks. Participants will each receive a $200 stipend in addition to reimbursement for on-campus parking. Any transportation and lodging costs are the responsibility of the pilot volunteer, and sessions are currently being scheduled for dates starting March 3 and running through March.

If you want to participate or would like more information, please contact Jonathan Zoetrum at or (404) 455-8838.

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Other Industry News
• Bloomberg reports that U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said he’ll meet with officials of FedEx and UPS to urge the two cargo airlines to adopt pilot-fatigue rules imposed on passenger carriers. Read more.

• According to CBS Money Watch, flight attendants at United Airlines approved a new contract on Tuesday that puts the airline a step closer to combining those workers with their colleagues from Continental. Read more.

• ABC News reports that airlines raised fares last week for the third time this year. Read more.

• AvWeb notes that Joe Ayoob, a former college quarterback at UC Berkeley, recently set a new world record for paper airplane flying. Read more.

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On March 7, 1942, ALPA advised the U.S. Army that ALPA pilots would be willing to fly up to 100 hours per month (instead of the standard 85) to support the U.S. war effort during World War II. Legislation temporarily suspending the 85-hour rule was signed by President Franklin Roosevelt the following month.

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Feedback & E-mail Address Changes
Questions or comments on this FastRead? Give us your feedback at

If you have moved or changed your ISP or e-mail address, please update your ALPA records. If you don’t, you will no longer receive the ALPA FastRead and other e-mail bulletins and notices, and once your postal forwarding order expires, you’ll no longer receive the magazine and other ALPA mail. You can do it yourself by going to and logging in. Go to “My ALPA” in the menu at the top of the page, and from there, you’ll be instructed how to make the necessary changes.

If you don’t have access to the members-only section of, you can e-mail your requests by sending them to Be sure to include your member number or enough other information so that we can identify you in the membership database, and tell us what information needs to be updated.

Please note that it is not sufficient just to notify your LEC or MEC of these changes—you should register them with the ALPA Membership Department in Herndon.

Can’t remember your member number or how to log in? Need information about your ALPA insurance programs? These and other questions about ALPA services can be answered by contacting

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Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l
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