Teamster International Representative Christopher Moore offers his perspective on aviation as an industry. As leader of the Aviation Mechanics Coalition/Airline Division, Moore discusses the future and growth of unions within the industry with Are We There Yet? host Grant Harrell.
In recent Boeing studies, the forecast of the number of people needed to fill vacancies among aircraft mechanics suggests a demand for one hundred and thirty-two thousand new mechanics by 2041. Over the past 5 years, the numbers n don’t necessarily have to align with that goal and that’s because 30% of that workforce is close to retirement. There is a need for a younger fleet, especially with COVID accelerating early retirement in this industry.
Moore also alludes to aviation history drawing a stigma of instability with the 80s, 90s and 911s in what was “a lot of bankruptcies, a lot of people losing faith in it as a career,” Moore said. , but we’ve come a long way since then in terms of “stabilizing the industry and making it a good place to work…wages are more stable, and we’re doing a lot of good things in terms of airlines and employee relations”.
Teamster initiatives align with student outreach programs and events, sponsorships in aerospace maintenance skills competitions, FAA workforce grants to fully implement an educational program at come, flexibly suitable for high school students and veterans in undeserved communities. Plus, apprenticeship programs for members within the airlines, offering an accelerated program to get their license faster.
“We work with a lot of different people… Group of airlines and schools that teach aircraft maintenance, unions, and we’re all banding together to try to work out how we can help streamline the process for schools aircraft maintenance to make it easier for the schools to modify the program as needed,” Moore said.
From benefits to contract negotiations, legal representation to training and development, Moore and Teamster are on the front lines of aviation to continue answering the big question, Are We There Yet? with plausible solutions for union work and talent acquisition.