Northwest Mechanics Begin Strike Vote

Northwest Airlines AMFA members will be sent ballots and voting instructions soon and will have until July 19 to cast their votes on whether to authorize a strike.


Minneapolis, MN (BUSINESS WIRE), July 1, 2005 -- The Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA) today announced that its National Executive Council has authorized a strike vote in light of Northwest Airlines' continuing refusal to take current contract negotiations seriously. Northwest Airlines AMFA members will be sent ballots and voting instructions soon and will have until 10:00 a.m. on July 19 to cast their votes on whether to authorize a strike.

"It's ironic that Northwest adamantly refuses to engage in the give-and-take needed for progress in negotiations, yet complains that progress isn't being made. You can't have successful negotiations when only one party is willing to negotiate," said AMFA National Director O.V. Delle-Femine.

In his letter accompanying the voting materials, Delle-Femine said, "Since the beginning of negotiations in October 2004, Northwest Airlines has taken the stance that the AMFA members should continue to sacrifice their jobs and accept pay cuts that are disproportionate to the other work groups and out of line with your industry peer group. The company's negotiating committee has continued to refuse to negotiate the many language issues that remain open for resolution and they have steadfastly refused to move off their initial economic proposal."

Delle-Femine's letter pointed out that in the most recent negotiating session, AMFA made "a very generous economic proposal" that "would have saved NWA over $140 million a year in labor costs. This proposal is fair and equitable compared to the other (Northwest Airlines) work groups and the rest of the industry." He said AMFA's proposal, which included a 16.1 percent pay cut and other concessions, was "summarily dismissed by the company." Northwest has not budged from its initial proposal that seeks to save about $176 million per year through pay reductions of 25-26 percent and other major concessions.

"These developments leave us little choice but to prepare for a strike," the letter went on to say.

AMFA represents more aircraft technicians than any other union. AMFA's craft union represents aircraft maintenance technicians and related support personnel at Alaska Airlines, ATA, Horizon Air, Independence Airlines, Mesaba Airlines, Northwest Airlines, Southwest Airlines and United Airlines. AMFA's credo is "Safety in the air begins with quality maintenance on the ground." To learn more about AMFA, visit www.amfanatl.org.

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