WHY SCOPE MATTERS TO DELTA PILOTS
Scope and the Role of Section 1 of the PWA
Scope is the first Section of the Delta Pilot Working Agreement (PWA). Scope seeks to protect Delta jobs and careers by defining what flying is performed by Delta pilots and what flying can be done by pilots that aren’t on the Delta Air Lines pilots seniority list.
While Section 1 of the PWA protects Delta pilot jobs and careers, it is not just the job itself but the value of having this choice for career progression that Scope seeks to protect.
Unlike carriers with an all narrowbody fleet, the Delta fleet has many different narrowbody and widebody categories, and pilots at Delta can choose where to “spend” their seniority currency.
The Scope Compliance and Analysis Committee analyzes trends, changes, and challenges to Scope. These longer-term changes over multiple years can be seen as one of the indicators of the effectiveness of the current Section 1 PWA Scope protections.
A Changing Airline Landscape
As airlines around the world rebuild post-COVID, a new reality is emerging. Most carriers have smaller fleets. Many large aircraft like the A380 and 747, and 777 are not scheduled to return. Some airlines have discontinued long-haul flying while others have ceased operations altogether.
Some markets will be quicker to return, while others will take years. Partly due to the efforts by ALPA to secure government financial support through the numerous CAREs acts and your MECs efforts to reach MOUs and LOAs that helped alleviate the need for more drastic measures, Delta and the Delta employees have weathered the storm.
Thankfully the US Domestic market is one of the largest and most robust markets and has helped Delta return to profitability far before many other global airlines.
Delta Pilot Pay and Quality of Life
Why Widebody Jobs Matter to Delta Pilot Careers
Delta pilot careers are intrinsically linked to the Delta fleet. Delta’s widebody aircraft are typically more senior, and more aircraft means a need for more pilots.
Every AE with widebody positions represents an opportunity for Delta pilots to advance. When a pilot bids into a widebody category, they advance their career. In addition to better pay, widebody flying offers better QOL since most widebody flying consists of trips that have one leg a day, an augmented crew, and dedicated crew rest.
When one Delta pilot advances to a widebody category, all pilots on the seniority list below that pilot also advance their career. Even the pilots not in widebody categories benefit as more senior pilots leave those fleets for widebody flying. Sometimes advancing one number is all it takes to have a holiday off, not missing an important event, or getting that extra-pay green slip.