Southwest Airlines: Mechanics Secure Brighter Future with Raises

Southwest Airlines: Mechanics agreed to a new deal, keeping them with the company until 2027. The 2,870 members of the Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association approved a contract with 20.5% wage increases over three years.

Bret Oestreich, president of the Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association, praised the negotiating committees’ hard work in a press release. It’s great that our wages have increased and AMFA is making industry-changing contracts. Under the new agreement, aircraft repair technicians’ top salary will increase to $65.79. Per the union, the contract boosts Southwest Airlines’ maintenance technicians’ salaries above other major airlines. Delta Air Lines pays $62.02, United Airlines pays $60.25, and American Airlines pays $58.45.

This will be the fifth deal that Southwest Airlines and the unions it works with have signed since October 2022. Adam Carlisle, Southwest’s VP of labor relations, said, “Our mechanics excel in maintaining Southwest’s Boeing 737 fleet.”

Southwest Airlines

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Adam Carlisle added, “Our mechanics and other related employees do a great job of taking care of Southwest’s fleet of planes.” The money they get from this deal is in line with what the industry pays, and they continue to meet our business’s needs.

Southwest is in talks with pilots, flight attendants, ramp agents, operations agents, supply agents, and cargo agents. In a contract dispute with Southwest, the pilots’ union asked to end mediation with the airline. This brought the chance of a strike closer.

The Southwest Airlines Pilots Association is made up of more than 9,000 pilots who work for Southwest Airlines. In June, the Southwest flight attendants’ union’s executive board voted against a potential deal. This meant that the parties involved in the talks had to start over. Southwest says that the National Mediation Board has asked the two sides not to meet without the judges who have been assigned to them. The next open dates will be in January 2024.

Our Reader’s Queries

Does Southwest Airlines have collective bargaining?

Southwest Airlines and our Employees fall under the Railway Labor Act (RLA), just like other US-based airlines. The RLA covers collectively bargained agreements (CBAs) that don’t expire but become amendable.

How big is Southwest’s fleet?

As of December 2023, Southwest Airlines boasts a fleet of 815 aircraft, all hailing from the Boeing 737 family of narrow-body airliners. In fact, Southwest Airlines holds the title of the world’s largest operator of the Boeing 737.

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