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American Airlines pilot union prepares to hunt federal mediation in contract talks

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American Airlines jet parked at LaGuardia International Airport in Recent York. 

Adam Jeffery | CNBC

American Airlines‘ pilot union is taking steps toward looking for federal mediation in contract negotiations as talks with the country’s largest carrier drag on, in line with a note from the labor group.

The Allied Pilots Association, which represents some 15,000 American Airlines aviators, said in a message to pilots last week that its board unanimously approved a motion for the union to organize an application for National Mediation Board intervention in its talks with the corporate, though it had not filed as of Monday afternoon.

The union’s potential request that the National Mediation Board intervene comes greater than three months after American CEO Robert Isom offered pilots 17% raises in a latest contract proposal.

Major pilot groups across the U.S., which also include those at Southwest, United, Delta and FedEx, have struggled to achieve agreements as they seek pay increases amid high inflation and higher schedules after a rollercoaster pandemic that saw flight hours slashed after which surge.

Several groups have already turned to mediation. Pilots for those carriers have been picketing in recent months.

Compensation and a few working conditions are amongst issues still up within the air with American, APA spokesman Dennis Tajer said.

Alaska Airlines said Monday that its pilots members ratified a latest three-year contract, including wage increases of as much as 23%, making the Seattle-based airline an outlier amongst major carriers in reaching an agreement.

American didn’t immediately comment. The carrier reports quarterly results and its demand outlook before the market opens on Thursday.

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