Mesa spools up Freedom Air

wscrj

Member
Aug 23, 2002
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Mesa Air Group is preparing to launch Freedom Airlines, probably starting next month. THe initial cadre of pilots started groundschool last Monday. THis is a non-union airline, started supposedly to sidestep scope limitations at US Air, and while Mesa is in negotiations with its ALPA represented pilot group. I''m interested to hear what folks have to say about this.
 

crj579

Member
Aug 25, 2002
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Freedom is most likely an action that was forced on the company when DW publicly stated that 900's do not deserve to be flown at the regional level. [8)]
 

Tim47SIP

Member
Aug 23, 2002
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I would like to know what ALPA will try to do to the pilots. My guess is that they will try some pressure but dont know what. Remember these are ALPA guys jumping the fence for something ALPA does not want. I think you are going to start seeing more of this because of ALPA's recent behavior. From what I have heard, Mesa is having no problems getting pilots over there. They are simply on a leave of absence from Mesa. Should be interesting to see how this all pans out.[8)]
 

motnot

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Aug 20, 2002
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AWA's pilots, for one, are apparently going to deny these guys jumpseats, once the union gets a list of who all has signed up with Freedom. I've heard that ALPA plans to do that across the industry. Not sure how much good that'll do, but I guess we can watch it play out.
 

Rhino

Senior
Aug 20, 2002
308
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Don't think there aren't ALPA scab lists available to all 121 pilots.

Don't think one's name is ever subsequently stricken.
 

crj579

Member
Aug 25, 2002
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The arbitration means nothing to CCAIR pilots now. The whole thing started when they tried to negotiate a contract. ALPA national wouldn't sign it at first- it contained 900 rates, then CCAIR pilots tried to decertify ALPA at their company. ALPA national then promised the CCAIR MEC that it would be signed if they agreed to keep ALPA on the property for another year and they could push for one list with Mesa Air Group. As it turned out Duane Woerth said he was shocked at the fact it contained 900 rates and he thought the rates were too low - he refused to sign it. All of this happening when the CEO of Mesa said that he needed a contract which would be concessionary or CCAIR would be out of business. CCAIR pilots took ALPA to court to try to get their contract signed by ALPA national which was ratified by 72% of the pilot group. The judge ruled that the CCAIR pilots knew ALPA national had to sign the contract before it was legal and the court would not get involved in a labor dispute. CCAIR pilots are now looking at being on the street. And now Mesa pilots are up for a new contract and instead of negotiating rates for the 70 and 90 seat jets, the MEC ( most likely ALPA national) is pushing for a strike. Whew! I think I covered most of it. This might be a good reason why Freedom is starting. ALPA would probably like Mesa and their 90 seat jets to just go away.
 

crj579

Member
Aug 25, 2002
18
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I dont think you know the definition of a scab. Although ALPA sure is pushing Mesa to strike only after a few section 6 negotiations. It is my opinion that they want exactly what happened at CCAIR to happen to Mesa.
 
OP
W

wscrj

Member
Aug 23, 2002
16
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Interesting opinions.

Freedom has now started it's second cl***. Jonathan Ornstein is running out of pilots willing to go to Freedom. Already, cl***es are being supplemented with street Captains and furloughed pilots from other carriers. To date, out of 1300 pilots at Mesa, approx. 25-30 have gone to Freedom.
Negotiations continue with the company, but at a snails pace. The company agrees to meet only once every six weeks.

I believe things will get worse before they get better.
 

dfw79

Senior
Aug 20, 2002
308
0
Fly new 90 seat jets...continue to collect unemployment. Tough choice here for out of work pilots.

The old powerful, chest thumping unions of yesterday are gone. Soon as the RLA is amended - their relevancy in the airline industry is going to be eliminated. No more strike power...no more tatics to get management to do what they want.

It will be interesting to see if Freedom pilots will allow other airline pilots to ride their jumpseats if they can't on the others'. Talk about taking a higher ground by allowing anyone to still ride in it. Pilots not wanting union representation shouldn't be punished for wanting to get away from the grips of ALPA. Perhaps another RLA amendment should cover jumpseats...that personal union feelings can't be used to block professionals from using them. Also making it illegal for any distribution of personal information - such as social security numbers - to the mass public. In this day and age of stolen identities becoming one of the largest crimes commited...the door should be open for anyone possessing a list of individuals' SSNs can be charged with a crime and/or sued.
 

ONTHESTREET

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Aug 20, 2002
198
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If the Mesa TA passes Freedom will be ALPA and integrated into MESA. The T/A is out for vote now I beleive.

At any rate, Freedom appears to be an ALPA carrier now. I doubt that the Mesa guys will vote down the T/A as it gives them the left seat on those new 70 seaters.
 
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wscrj

Member
Aug 23, 2002
16
0
Road show forthe TA are just beginning...voting will be at least a few weeks away. The CRJ-900 rollout was held in PHX the other day, with ops to start in April I beleive. There is currently a class of 28 ALPA approved Mesa pilots in the Freedom groundschool. This was part of the TA. Not sure if it will pass. The West coast folks see Freedom as a present and growing entity, the East coast people only hear about it. Couldn't say one way or the other right now.
 

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