As far as the issues are concerned, Bradford says that if USAPA takes over, it will move to date-of-hire seniority, but "fences will ensure that premerger positions are protected," he says.
If ALPA wins, Stephan says, the ruling will not be implemented because it must be part of a contract, on which pilots vote. "The only way for it to be implemented is for us to agree to it," he says.
Meanwhile, he says, one cannot overstate the advantages of a strong, established union that offers various level of personal support, lobbies extensively for pilot causes and has been a key proponent of airline safety for decades. Bradford says independent networks could provide the same benefits.
The simmering crisis will end, both leaders agree, when west pilots determine it is in their interest to make peace and gain access to lucrative international flying, most of which, including planned Beijing service, is flown by the east crew base in Philadelphia.Even with fences, Bradford says, "in eight to 10 years, we'll