Teamsters Replace Local as Bargaining Agent for Cape Air Pilots

March 27, 2009

International’s Airline Division Takes Direct Responsibility

HYANNIS, Mass., March 27 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Teamsters Airline Division Director David Bourne said today that he is replacing Teamsters Local 747 as the bargaining agent for pilots employed by Cape Air, Inc., who are now in mediation.

The International Brotherhood of Teamsters’ Airline Division in Washington, D.C., took direct responsibility for representing Hyannis, Mass-based Cape Air because of concerns over insufficient representation by the local.

In a letter to the Cape Air pilots, Bourne noted many Cape Air pilots and their local leadership raised concerns that the lack of support they were receiving from Local 747 would compromise their contract talks, now in mediation with the National Mediation Board.

“I have taken this step in order to place control of your negotiations directly under my authority as the director of the Airline Division,” Bourne wrote.

“I will not tolerate any member of the Airline Division being treated with anything less than 100 percent full-time, professional and completely focused support, under any circumstances,” Bourne wrote. “And after being apprised of the difficulties your Council has faced in your mediation, I will not allow this to continue and your career expectations to be placed at risk because of unacceptably substandard representation from Local 747.”

The move, while not unprecedented, indicates the hands-on style that Bourne brought to the Teamsters Airline Division since being named director in July. As the three-term master executive council chairman of the 1000 pilots employed at Atlas Air, Bourne earned a reputation for direct engagement with crewmembers, management and the national union to ensure crewmembers received very high levels of support.

John Caputo, an Atlas pilot who once served as vice chairman of the Atlas Air unit, said he would expect nothing less from Bourne.

“He is completely committed to ensuring his people have the total support of their union,” Caputo said. “For him to take such a step tells me there was a serious problem with the support these pilots were getting.”

No determination has yet been made as to which Teamsters local will eventually be assigned to represent the Cape Air group.

“Right now, our only focus is on providing these pilots with the support they have not been receiving and help them get a good contract,” Bourne said. “We’ll make that decision about what local they become part of when the time is appropriate.”

Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents more than 1.4 million hardworking men and women in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

SOURCE International Brotherhood of Teamsters

Source: newswire

comments powered by Disqus