Tuesday, February 03, 2009

JetBlue pilots' union certification election unsuccessful

JetBlue A320JetBlue pilots will remain without a union, at least for the time being. A ballot to certify the JetBlue Pilots Association as the sole bargaining agent for the pilots at JetBlue Airways was unsuccessful.

In November, pilots at JetBlue Airways filed a petition with the National Mediation Board (NMB) seeking union representation. A certification election was held, but according to results announced today, only 646 voted for union representation, while 1,291 out of a total of 1,937 pilots eligible to vote did not cast a ballot. In order for a union to be certified, the NMB rules requires that 50%-plus-one of those eligible to vote must have cast ballots in favor of the union.

Once the results were announced, JetBlue CEO Dave Barger released the following statement to the media:
"We are very pleased that JetBlue's Pilots have chosen to retain their direct relationship with the company. We will continue to work closely with our Pilots and all JetBlue crewmembers to ensure JetBlue's competitive position remains strong and our culture remains unique in the industry. We truly believe culture, an environment of collaboration and the company's agility are key competitive advantages for JetBlue."
Management at JetBlue Airways, which has no unionized work groups, had been opposed to the pilots' quest to establish a collective bargaining unit.

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