The unions that represent mechanics and ground workers at American Airlines and US Airways are asking federal regulators for single-carrier status so they can negotiate a joint contract with the merged airline company.
The filing, made with the National Mediation Board on Wednesday, asked the government to recognize an alliance between the Transport Workers Union and the International Machinists Union as the collective bargaining representatives for workers in the mechanic and related fleet service and stores groups.
“American Airlines has entered into an era of super-profits and it’s now time for our combined 30,000 members at the airline to secure the industry’s premier contracts,” the unions said in a statement. “Executives and shareholders are profiting handsomely, and this alliance will ensure our members are also rewarded for their hard work and sacrifice.”
The union workers will continue under their existing contracts as they begin joint contract talks with Fort Worth-based American. Last month, the Machinists, which represent workers at US Airways, approved a new three-year deal that includes pay raises and signing bonuses.
American said the filing was “a positive step in the integration of our two airlines.”
The mediation board has granted single-carrier status for merged airlines’ flight attendants. The pilots have also made a similar request, which the NMB has yet to rule on.