Viewing page 5 of 69

To All Members  -5-  October 15, 1942

As a matter of fact, the carriers are not empowered to lower new copilots' salaries because the national Labor Board decision is the minimum wage for air line pilots and copilots.  On any company where this is being done, it should be reported immediately to ALPA Headquarters so that we may prosecute the said company under the penalty section of the Civil Aeronautics Act.

There has been much talk about copilots' low salaries in foreign operation which, strange as it may seem, is also covered by legislation.  In this respect, your attention is invited to paragraph (2) of the above quoted air line pilots' minimum wage and working condition section in Federal law.

Your specific attention is directed to paragraph (3) which causes this entire section to be a minimum wage section.  In other words, we can bargain for higher rates of compensation and more favorable working conditions or relations, but we cannot bargain for less.

Your attention is also invited to paragraph (4) of the above quoted section which causes the carriers to comply with all of the provisions of Title II of the Railway Labor Act or they will be prosecuted under the penalty section of the law, which is by no means lenient.

In paragraph (5) of the quoted section of the law you will notice that pilots are referred to as "pilots" and "copilots."  I think it is wise for all the pilots to maintain their designations in the same terminology as is used in all laws and regulations in Washington which refer to air line pilots as "pilots" and "copilots."  Some time ago the operators injected the term, "Captain" for the first pilot of an airliner and, "First Officer" for the copilot.  All this sounded good but there is always a catch.  Now that we have a war on our hands, everybody seems to think an air line captain is comparable to an Air Corps Captain as to salaries and most everything else.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  There is no connection whatever.  Unless we stick to our proper designations, it is going to add to the confusion that the carriers are continuously attempting to inject into the pilots' employer-employee relations picture to the detriment of the best interests of the pilots.

Getting back to the above quoted section of the law, make sure you understand it and make sure you understand decision 83 which is the scale under which you are paid. The greater part of this decision is included in your employment agreements and all new copilots who haven't a copy of the pilots' employment agreement (furnished by the company for whom they work) should ask for such a copy.  Headquarters recently ran into a case where only twenty copies of the working agreement had been furnished to the pilots of one company, and all this more than two years ago.  Since that time their piloting staff has grown to more than three times the former number, yet only a few of the pilots and copilots had a copy of the employment agreement and knew it was all about.  This is just another way of
Please note that the language and terminology used in this collection reflects the context and culture of the time of its creation, and may include culturally sensitive information. As an historical document, its contents may be at odds with contemporary views and terminology. The information within this collection does not reflect the views of the Smithsonian Institution, but is available in its original form to facilitate research. For questions or comments regarding sensitive content, access, and use related to this collection, please contact transcribe@si.edu.