MILWAUKEE (WKOW) -- The union leadership of AirTran Airways pilots announced Monday that its members have overwhelmingly approved a measure granting them the authority to call a strike if contract talks fail.
According to Air Line Pilots Association, a resounding 97.5 percent of pilots voted in favor of the strike ballot. More than 96 percent of eligible pilots participated in the polling.
"This vote serves as notice to AirTran management that we are united and resolved to get an industry-standard contract now," said Linden Hillman, Chairman of the AirTran chapter of the Air Line Pilots Association, Int'l. "We do not want a strike, we want a contract. The time has passed to get this done."
AirTran and its pilots have been in contract talks for more than five years. AirTran pilots are paid significantly less than industry-standard, and are seeking a contract that rewards them for their contribution to the success of the airline.
Founded in 1931, the Air Line Pilots Association represents 53,000 pilots at 38 airlines in the United States and Canada, including the more than 1,600 pilots at AirTran Airways.