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Delta pilots union set to continue labor contract talks into 2020

Thousands of pilots, attendants to be hired by Delta Airlines in 2020

The pilots union at Delta Air Lines is set to continue labor contract talks into 2020, after starting negotiations in April 2019.

That will extend talks beyond the term of the Delta pilots' current contract. The pilots' contract does not expire, but becomes amendable Dec. 31, 2019.

"It does not look like we're going to have a contract before the amendable date, but we're going to head into the New Year focused on getting a contract for the pilots that rewards them for their contributions to the company's success," said Karen Miller, a spokeswoman for the Air Line Pilots Association at Delta.

The negotiation committees for the union and management met in November and December, but “with the holidays no negotiations are scheduled to take place until January,” Miller said.

The current labor contract for Delta pilots was struck in late 2016 with a term that lasts through 2019. It granted them an 18 percent raise for 2016, 3 percent raises in 2017 and 2018 and a 4 percent raise in 2019.

Striking a new labor contract can allow for pay raises in the future.

“Too many pilots have seen the worst of times in the airline industry, and the Delta pilots are now in the unique position of capitalize on the best of times,” according to Miller.

Delta said it has been meeting with the pilots union regularly since negotiations started in April.

“Delta remains committed to ensuring our pilots have a strong contract that provides meaningful improvements and the best total compensation package among our competitors while also allowing Delta to continue to compete globally,” the company said in a written statement.