It has come to our attention that the Leeward Islands Airline Pilots Association (LIALPA) has gone the route of negotiating their new collective agreement in the media, a mere week before the peak busy Easter travel season.
It is with deep regret that LIAT makes this initial response to today’s press release from the association, because we have always made it clear as a company that we would prefer not to conduct negotiations in the press.
LIAT has been continuing negotiations with the pilots as we have with all the other groups of employees.
We have met with LIALPA on a number of occasions to negotiate a collective agreement.
In fact, we have met as recently as last Monday and following a letter from LIALPA concerning the negotiations we have submitted counter proposals and suggested a further meeting for next Wednesday, April 08.
Some of the matters being negotiated are before the Attorney General of Antigua and Barbuda for his intervention.
While the company plans to issue a full statement in the coming days, we must respond immediately to the suggestion that the LIAT Board of Directors has considered or is considering “AIG-type” Management bonuses.
LIAT would like to categorically deny this. It is an absolutely false and malicious statement by LIALPA in this unstable economic and financial climate.
The board of LIAT has not contemplated or is not now contemplating the payment of bonuses to any member of the Executive Management; Management or Staff of LIAT.
LIAT has been negotiating in good faith and it is our intention to continue to do so.