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Delta pilots approve new contract with 34% pay increase

Atlanta News First logo Atlanta News First 3/1/2023 Tim Darnell
Delta Air Lines pilots approve new contract. © Provided by Atlanta News First Delta Air Lines pilots approve new contract.

ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - Delta Air Lines pilots announced Wednesday morning they have approved a new contract with the Atlanta-based global airline.

In a news release, the Delta Master Executive Council (MEC) and the Air Line Pilots Association reported 78% of Delta pilots voted in favor of a new comprehensive working agreement that includes over $7 billion in cumulative increases over four years.

The pilots also voted in favor of a Letter of Agreement by 90% that provides job protections for Delta pilot jobs against international flying by Delta’s partners. Ninety-six percent of eligible pilots participated in the ballot.

“This industry-leading contract is the direct result of the Delta pilots’ unity and resolve,” said Capt. Darren Hartmann, MEC chair. “Despite a two-year delay in negotiations due to COVID, we never lost sight of our goal to obtain significant across-the-board enhancements to our Pilot Working Agreement.”

Back in October 2022, 99% of voting pilots approved to authorize a strike.

The new agreement includes a 34% increase in pay raises over the life of the contract as well as vacations and benefits for Delta’s 15,000 pilots. According to Delta’s Feb. 10, 2023, SEC filing:

  • Pilots will immediately receive an 18% pay increase, as of the day the contract is signed.
  • Pilots will then receive a 5% pay increase one year after that.
  • Pilots will then receive two 4% pay increases in the two years that follow.
  • Pilots will receive a one-time payment of 4% of 2020 and 2021 pay, plus a 14% payment of 2022 pay.

“This contract recognizes the Delta pilots’ substantial contribution to our company’s success. We will now focus our efforts on ensuring all provisions are implemented and enforced,” said Hartmann.

The contract’s effective date is March 2, 2023. It becomes amendable on December 31, 2026.

“I want to thank both negotiating teams and the National Mediation Board for their efforts in reaching this agreement that recognizes our pilots’ contributions to Delta,” said Delta Chief of Operations John Laughter in a news release. “From the beginning of the negotiations process, we set out to deliver the industry’s best pilot contract to the industry’s best pilots, one that keeps us as a top destination for U.S. aviation careers, and this contract is a reflection of that unwavering commitment.”


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