Delta Air Lines pilots have approved a new multi-year contract with a pay raise of over 30 percent.
According to The New York Times, the union representing Delta’s pilots, the Air Line Pilots Association, said 78 percent of Delta plots voted in favor of the four-year contract that included a 34 percent raise.
The ratified deal comes after Delta pilots picketed last summer and threatened to authorize a strike if a contract wasn’t worked out. The agreement takes effect on Thursday and runs through 2026.
The airline’s chief of operations, John Laughter, said the contract “recognizes our pilots’ contributions to Delta.” Air Line Pilots Association official Darren Hartmann said the “industry-leading contract is the direct result of the Delta pilots’ unity and resolve.”
With other major airlines in the United States still negotiating new contracts with pilot unions—including American, Southwest and United—Delta’s new deal will likely lead to similar agreements.
Airline pilots have been a major topic of conversation in the travel industry, as a study from November found that over 75 percent of airports in the U.S. have experienced diminished or lost air service due to the severe pilot shortage.
According to the Regional Airline Association (RAA), 76 percent of U.S. airports have been impacted by the pilot shortage, with more than 500 regional aircraft parked and an “associated air service retraction at 324 communities.”
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