Viewing page 7 of 69

To All Members  -7-  October 15, 1942

Policy off as a legitimate pilots' employment agreement under the terms of the Railway Labor Act.  The labor relations people for this company know better than this because one of their leading personnel men, Mr. Ed Paxton, was in Washington during the entire four years that the pilots' amendment to the Railway Labor Act was being written and sponsored by the Air Line Pilots Association.  He knows all about it, yet we find this going on in the company that employs him.  This Policy is in no sense whatever a labor agreement under the terms of the Railway Labor Act because it was not negotiated and mutually agreed to by both interested parties, that is, the pilots and the company were not properly represented; nor does it bear the signatures of the duly designated and lawful representatives of the pilots who are the properly designated officials of the Air Line Pilots Association.

Headquarters has carried on a continuous program of education for its members ever since its inception, but lately the turnover has been so great, especially during the last year due to the war, that many of the younger members are not aware of the very extensive protection they have in Federal law.  I think it behooves the older members to acquaint the younger men with all this and, above al, the older members -- and there are still plenty of them scattered around -- should tell the younger members what it is all about and in addition they should keep checking to see that the carriers abide by the laws that have been sponsored by ALPA and enacted by Congress to protect the pilots.

These are troubled times and the carriers, instead of co-operating with the pilots and attempting to keep wartime air transportation rolling along at high speed on the wheels of good morale, seem to be indulging in a spree of attempts at chiseling that is not doing anyone any good and, certainly, not national defense.  In this respect, your attention is invited to the Editorial that appeared in the September issue of the AIR LINE PILOT.  The president of American Airlines, C. R. Smith, Larry Fritz, Vice-President, Operations, TWA, and another operating man by the name of Robert Smith of Braniff have all managed to obtain Colonelcies in the Air Transport Command of the Air Forces.  In the opinion of the pilots, these commissions were sponsored by Mr. Gorrell of the Air Transport Association.  This Command is in Washington, as is the Headquarters of the Air Transport Association.  We could say a lot more on this point but I believe it is unnecessary where a group of intelligent men are involved.

Before leaving this subject, I would like to again caution everyone about signing anything or agreeing to anything relating to pilots' salaries, rules, or working conditions, unless they first discuss it with Headquarters.  This is the only way we are going to be able to keep our picture clean and keep the companies from taking advantage of the pilots.  In other words, we must know that is going on.  Our Headquarters has always operated under a terrific responsibility and a constantly mounting multiplicity of duties which we felt would diminish during the war, but due to the non-co-operative attitude of the air carriers and their representatives, the reverse has occurred.  We don't mind all this one bit, but at least all our members should know it's a difficult job to represent the pilots under such conditions.  Obviously, we must now have a greater degree of co-operation from all
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.