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Allied Pilots Association Supports Proposed Union Election Rule Change.

"The current election procedures are inherently undemocratic."

FORT WORTH, Texas -- The Allied Pilots Association (APA), certified collective bargaining agent for the 11,500 pilots of American Airlines (NYSE:AMR), issued the following statement regarding the National Mediation Board's proposed union election rule change, which would require that unions win a majority of votes only from those workers who cast ballots, rather than from a majority of all those eligible to vote. According to an interpretation of the Railway Labor Act of 1934, aviation and rail workers who don't vote on whether to create a union are counted as "no" votes.

"Thousands of airline and railway workers who cast ballots in favor of representation were prevented from forming a union and therefore, from protecting their rights as employees because of this archaic rule, which undermines the principle of free choice," said APA President Captain Lloyd Hill. "Workers must have a choice to vote for union representation, and right now, that's not the case with the 'veto by silence' principle. Simply put, a majority of those voting should decide the outcome of any election.

"The current election procedures are inherently undemocratic, and actually encourage union-busting voter-suppression campaigns. This change is long overdue," Captain Hill added.

That is the full text of APA's statement.

The NMB rule change would bring the election procedures for aviation and rail workers in line with the current procedures used for workers covered under the National Labor Relations Act and other U.S. labor laws, whereby a union can be created as long as a majority of all votes cast are in favor of collective bargaining.

The NMB will be taking public comments until Jan. 4, 2010 on its proposed rule change.

Founded in 1963, the Allied Pilots Association--the largest independent pilot union in the U.S.--is headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas. APA represents the 11,500 pilots of American Airlines, including 1,888 pilots on furlough. The furloughs began shortly after the September 11, 2001 attacks. Also, several hundred American Airlines pilots are on full-time military leave of absence serving in the armed forces. The union's Web site address is American Airlines is the nation's second-largest passenger carrier and fifth-largest cargo carrier.
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Publication:Business Wire
Geographic Code:1U7TX
Date:Nov 9, 2009
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