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AIPA to represent ALL Qantas Group Pilots

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AIPA to represent ALL Qantas Group Pilots

Old 23rd May 2007, 08:37
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AIPA to represent ALL Qantas Group Pilots

From the following decision: http://www.airc.gov.au/decisionssign...007airc420.htm

[113] Although pilots employed by Qantas are afforded significantly better terms and conditions of employment than the pilots employed by Jetstar, they perform much the same work on similar aircraft. Although it may be in Qantas’ interests that Qantas domestic and Jetstar pilots be represented by different unions, it is not necessarily in the best interests of the pilots, especially those employed by Jetstar, that that situation prevail.
What about ONE union for ALL Pilots?
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Old 23rd May 2007, 08:48
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Gee, you gotta be quick round here! The email from AIPA only just appeared in my inbox!

As for:

What about ONE union for ALL Pilots?
Totally agree, but this has to be a step in the right direction. Bring it on!
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Old 23rd May 2007, 09:30
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A great result for Qantas group pilots. With the recent decision by Jetstar to commence the screwing of their own staff hopefully this will convince Jetstar pilots that a unified stance will bear more fruit than going it alone.

Oldmeadow will be choking on his Chateaubriand!!
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Old 23rd May 2007, 09:58
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[84] Mr Borenstein referred to several AIPA newsletters and other announcements to support the AFAP’s contention that the AIPA is only interested in looking after the interests of Qantas pilots and that where their interests clash with those of Jetstar pilots, the interests of the former will prevail

Yeah - It doesn't mean that AIPA is the best choice though.
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Old 23rd May 2007, 10:54
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What about ONE union for ALL Pilots
what about one union for ALL qantas group staff
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Old 23rd May 2007, 11:37
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"AIPA to represent ALL Qantas Group Pilots"?

Did you guys READ the decision? Don't give up your day jobs, lads. This decision means NONE of the above.

Previously, JQ pilots could choose to be members of the AFAP or the TWU if they wanted. They could not join and be represented by AIPA before this decision. Now they can. QFLink pilots can now join and be represented by AIPA as well.

This is not a move towards one union. It is the opposite -- More choices, not "one union."

Kaufmann makes the point at 87 of his decision that what he heard "suggests that airline pilots are industrially astute.

"In my view, the mere extension of the scope of the AIPA’s eligibility rule will not lead to pilots from Jetstar, Eastern or other airlines joining it unless they are satisfied that their industrial interests can be better catered for by the AIPA than by the AFAP or some other group."

Kaufmann anticipates that we pilots will throw our lot in with whichever organisation we think will get us the best outcome, at our airline.

Given that VB, Skywest, Alliance, Ozjet and NJS pilots are excluded from representation by AIPA by the new paragraphs IX and X, my conclusion is that this decision prevents "one union" for all aussie pilots. There will be at least two, probably three, with unequal coverage ('market share') within each airline.

More choices does not lead to "one provider." Example - mobile telephone service providers. Ever tried to get all your mates onto the one phone service? Hey guys, everybody get onto Vodaphone pre-pay, free calls between vodaphone mobiles! If all your mates, work colleagues, family, etc bit the bullet you would never pay more than the minimum monthly fee.

But it would never happen. Each provider (telstra, optus, aapt, vodaphone, etc, etc, etc) would have a share of the action. Some bigger, some smaller, but no monopoly. Pepsi still has a share of the cola market. Marmite and Dick Smith spread are still on supermarket shelves and being bought in (small) quantities.

No matter how hard Ian Woods and his team lobby and cajole JQ and QFLink pilots, it will be up to the pilots to choose which union they join, if they join at all.

This decision means that some JQ pilots will be AIPA, some others AFAP, some others just JPC, or nothing at all.

So lets not get too excited.

Last edited by ITCZ; 23rd May 2007 at 12:11.
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Old 23rd May 2007, 12:02
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I have not seen the document and am a litle dismayed that AIPA cant represent all pilots.Why is this so!As a vb pilot I would be happy to become one union asap.
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Old 23rd May 2007, 12:07
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Remember, "it's all about choice".
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Old 23rd May 2007, 12:16
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The JQ boys may still back the JPC.
The Jetstar Pilot Crucifiers. Oh dear.
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Old 23rd May 2007, 12:46
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I have not seen the document and am a litle dismayed that AIPA cant represent all pilots.Why is this so!As a vb pilot I would be happy to become one union asap.
This was never about AIPA getting coverage of all pilots. AIPA only set out to gain coverage of Qantas group pilots that flew "their routes". See Kaufmann at his paragraph 66.

That is what they wanted, and that is what they won.

Coverage of VB/Skywest/NJS pilots on domestic and regional routes, coverage of freighter pilots etc. was not the objective.

If anything, by initiating and continuing with expensive legal action with wall-to-wall silk against a 'competing' pilot union, the AIPA has soured relations with the one other big pilot union in this country, and put the 'one pilot union' concept back several steps.

You guys at VB (AFAP membership 475 out of 560-580 pilots) stand to lose as many as 383 paid up AFAP members in sunnies, eastern and jetstar to AIPA. That is a huge potential loss of subscriptions, and therefore union resources. Will the AFAP be able to offer you the support you enjoy now, however flawed? Can you go and join the 'big guys' at AIPA?

No, you can't. Thats for QF group pilots only.
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Old 23rd May 2007, 12:58
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LOL whatever and you think AIPA could achive coverage of all pilots in 1 case?? haha you are out of your depth! The government has made this a difficult case and AIPA is working step by Step to try and incorporate all pilots into their coverage if they choose, but I can guarantee they cant do it in one swoop, the Workchoices has made it a minefield.

AIPA has a responsiblity to cover groups that are doing their own routes, that is a fact, but I believe AIPA is seeking coverage for all pilots ultimately, but its not a simple thing!
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Old 23rd May 2007, 13:21
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If anything, by initiating and continuing with expensive legal action with wall-to-wall silk against a 'competing' pilot union, the AIPA has soured relations with the one other big pilot union in this country, and put the 'one pilot union' concept back several steps.
Strewth, talk about 'slant'.

If this was about giving people the option of what union to join then why was the AFAP so against AIPA being part of that choice? If I understand this correctly the AFAP was part of the case going against AIPA that they be able to represent all group pilots. If AFAP is so crash hot at representing their members then surely those QF group members who didn't like the AIPA representation would vote with their feet and go to AFAP anyway.....and that means that the 'choice' between AFAP and AIPA would have no reason to be opposed by the AFAP.

The reality is that AFAP also lined up some silks and are as much a part of the problem of 'one pilot union' as AIPA- although at least AIPA is working towards an initial starting point that all those who are employed in the same group have the option of being represented by the same association irrespective of what part of the group they work for.

I have no idea if this is just the first step of a wider uber-association that has coverage of GA and so on but I do know that it's a heck of a good start for [i]all[/] QF group pilots. What I find disappointing is that if I decided to go to DJ that I could no longer be a part of AIPA.

As a solution to ITCZ's second last paragraph, perhaps you should be talking to your AFAP reps and telling them to talk to AIPA. I sent an email to an AIPA VP last week about this very issue to find that the door has been effectively shut in our faces for the time being- due to AFAP's opposition to the AIPA submission to be able to represent the group pilots. My email to the VP will be a monthly affair to find out what AIPA is doing to ensure that we are working together- if not part of the one association, at least as members of associations that share information.

So, if you want the pilot groups in Australia to be one then you need to send the message to YOUR representatives that this is what YOU want. I made the mistake of not continuing to engage with a former AIPA President when he told me that AIPA would not be seeking coverage of Impulse and regional crew. I'll not make the same mistake again.

The ball on this is in OUR (pilots collectively) court.
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Old 23rd May 2007, 16:18
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Keg, you and I normally get along, so maybe this is a case of us both having a bit of 'slant.'

AIPA spun off from AFAP many moons ago to represent QF international pilots, when that was all QF flew, international. AFAP then focussed on representing domestic, regional and GA pilots.

AFAP cops a hiding in the dispute. Maybe the domestic pilots played it wrong, but a hiding it was. AFAP builds itself up again carefully over 15 years, a once-proud organisation that was nearly consigned to oblivion, and finds its feet. Helped immensely by the arrival of VB, it starts putting on more industrial staff, and the increased subs put the organisation back on a sound footing, and it starts kicking goals again.

Over fifty years of history and organisational knowledge about winning and defending conditions for pilots. Not always perfect, true. But don't forget that it was the foundations laid by the Federation under Dick Holt's leadership that made Pilot a professionally recognised and rewarded occupation. A foundation that AIPA inherited.

So for a good thirty years, fifteen of those being very hard times, the AFAP is looking after members in a number of organisations, AIPA looks after QF mainline pilots.

Now along comes Jetstar, poses a threat to the careers and lifestyles of QF pilots, AIPA decides there is a problem.

AIPA looks at QF regionals and Jetstar and says -- something needs to be done about these guys, JQ in particular. Does AIPA go to the Federation and say "hey, you guys already have coverage of 124 of the 360 odd JQ pilots, what can we do together to solve this problem?'

No. No consultation there from what I have heard.

Did AIPA go to the Federation and say "hey, you guys already have a solid 255 members out of 305 Sunstate and Eastern pilots already organised, what can we do together to solve this problem we have?"

No. In fact, a hair-brained scheme to get AIPA 'assistance' in the last EBA negotiation results in Eastern pilots losing thousands of dollars each in back pay, and the shiny new D8-400 goes to Sunnies. Nice job.

Did AIPA respond to a big call for assistance from Jetstar pilots?

No. And boy do the Jetstar guys clearly remember the rebuff they got from AIPA.

So, as far as it looks from where I sit, rather than 'team up' with a re-invigorated AFAP to solve the problem together, AIPA decided that it would compete for coverage.

What did they expect the AFAP to do? Give up coverage of two of their leading workplaces, sever their ties to men and women they had fought for for years, and not least, give up the subscription income of around 400 members that would gross $300k per annum and start trimming back their newly acquired capabilities?

It was AIPA that mounted the challenge and sought the rule change. It was AIPA that brought it into the world of wigs and gowns and $1,000hr advocates.

Keg, you and I appear to be on the same page re the desireability of one big union to effectively represent all pilots. Be assured that I am making my views known at my outfit. But please do not ignore the events leading up to this point. You would be familiar with the story of the prodigal son. Recall the protestations of the faithful son to the father, then you might understand why an AFAP guy is annoyed by the AIPA moves. GA and regionals and the sundry jet operators are AFAP territory, and AFAP was doing hard yards for them before they became a 'problem' for QF pilots.

AIPA might do good for JQ crews, I hope they do. Just don't pretend that AIPA haven't jumped into AFAP territory and that AIPA didn't do damage to a union it should have been aligned with. We won't get any further if you don't acknowledge that.

Last edited by ITCZ; 23rd May 2007 at 19:51.
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Old 23rd May 2007, 23:11
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ITCZ, I can understand your viewpoint but you need to be able to see it from a QF pilots point of view as well.

The AIPA rebuff of Impulse pilots that you bring up, the person responsible and the reasons for it are well known. You may use it to attack AIPA now, but most reasonable people see it for what it was. I was personally appalled when it occurred, most ordinary QF pilots were likewise. You can continue to use it if you like, but it is a low point of history that the current AIPA COM has battled constantly to redress.

Jetstar pilots were offered help. The JPC were using AIPA offices and resources as they were working behind AIPA's back to secure the LCC flying.

The main point is that all QF group pilots have to work together to end the very successful divide and rule strategies of Oldmeadow and Dixon. This is a great first step. The Group Opportunity List would be the icing on the cake but that won't happen unless we all finally learn that fellow pilots are not the enemy.

Jetstar is a fact of life. AIPA cannot stop Jetstar International. They realise that. The Federal court determination about the Sale Act won't stop Jetstar International no matter which way it goes. It will stop Jetstar from being hived off for sale if it goes the way AIPA wants it, but that is all.

Most QF guys would be happy to spend part of their careers flying for Jetstar if the barriers of the MOU were loosened and rates they fly under were more representative of market rates. They realise that mainline rates are a pipedream but working together we can get the Jetstar rates to something approximating what they should be. Talk about abour win/win!

Most QF guys would see this as a great first step in a process that should have been enacted years ago. The AFAP and AIPA should now get together and make AusALPA the umbrella organisation we all desperately need. That is the one union for all pilots.
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Old 24th May 2007, 00:21
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Thumbs up

ITCZ, thanks for the reasoned response.

As you say I suspect that we're actually advocating the same thing. You're right about the history- particularly the AFAP side of the coin- and that I don't know it all and particularly don't know a great deal about the split in '81 (or was it '83- either way I wasn't yet in my teen years) or the intracisies of '89 although having done a uni assignment on it I at least consider myself to be 'educated' on what happened but possibly not fully aware of the role that AIPA played in all of that.

I guess my frustration is that both AFAP and AIPA probably share the responsibility for a poor relationship over time and that attempts by one group or another to paint AIPA as the big, bad ogre who only care about J*, QFlink et al because QF drivers are now at risk as being an overtly simplistic view of the future.

I'll continue to write to my AIPA reps to tell them to work with AFAP. I hope you do the same with your AFAP guys. At the end of the day I don't care what the name of my association is as long it represents all parts of my 'group'. Longer term I'd like it to represent every driver in Australia. Whether that's AIPA or AusALPA I don't care.

Have a great day.
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Old 24th May 2007, 00:35
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A matter of trust (or lack thereof )

Have to agree with all and sundry that one voice is required for all. However, as a non Qantas type I just do not trust AIPA to represent my best interests. Without a doubt their mandate is Qantas, Qantas, Qantas, and all others are some way back in the rear view mirror. Am I wrong in this thought? I don't know. I want to subscribe to a unified organisation especially since my lot has just announced the AWA bulldust, but who do you trust.

Perhaps AIPA may somehow be able to convince those of us who feel as I do. To date they have done a lousy job at it!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 24th May 2007, 00:52
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AIPA representing Qantas Qantas Qantas is their biggest mistake and the reason other pilots will backstab these arrogant turkeys.

When this group of pilots and their union want to have ALL pilots in the one union we have half a chance.

Bring on the AIPA and AFAP merger and label non members as scabs.
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Old 24th May 2007, 01:42
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One small step for man.
Yes it is all about choice. Choice to be represented by who you want. AIPA is now providing an alternative for Qantas group pilots.
We can all continue the bitch session or, alternatively, look at the AIPA plan for the way forward, which encompasses all Qantas group pilots interests.
Unfortunately instant 400 commands are not available, but a plan that recognises all involved, unlike the clusterf*(k we have at the moment with seperate pilot bodies and negotiating parties.
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Old 24th May 2007, 01:45
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Hear what you are saying El K. Perhaps this is the beginning of an association that will exist along the longs of Balpa in the UK? Who knows.
Perhaps time for VIPA and AIPA to be talking as well.
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Old 24th May 2007, 10:01
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Can I start by saying what a great idea, one union representing the needs of the true collective regardless of airline.

However I would like to pose this question.

Regardless of the unions ability to have coverage of membership, is there still not a problem with access to negotiations without having the prior "party" status to the agreement under negotiation ?

I ask this almost rhetorically as I am sure that eventhough a union has membership coverage and indeed members, that does not mandate the said employer (being the other party to the agreement) to allow or even accept the "new" union into the negotiatons.

I should clarify my only source for this information/opinion is the EAA pilots fiasco and the refusal of management to allow the union at the table.
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