It’s 2008 and industrial relations is moving online. So no surprise to see the BA OpenSkies battlefield moving to YouTube. BALPA has secured a robust message of support from the head of the Allied Pilots Association, which is the independent union that represents American Airlines pilots. The main thrust of APA president Capt Lloyd Hill’s message is that OpenSkies is analogous to American Eagle – American’s regional aircraft arm. Hill says American’s pilots allowed American Eagle to be set up with 19-seat turboprops in the 1980s and then saw it grow to the current 300 regional jets – “now the eighth largest airline the US”. The crucial scope clause xc did not prevent that happening.
“We have spent every minute since regretting it,” says Hill. “If we had had the foresight and someone to advise us we would not have let this happen.”
BALPA has also got IFALPA supporting it – although the value of that depends largely on the willingness of the national unions around the world to enforce it.