Management and non-union employees at USAirways are eligible for merit raises and unions being asked for pay concessions are screaming bloody murder. In all, 3100 employees are eligible for up to a 4% increase in pay.
Both sides have this one wrong.
USAirways needs to keep its top people, and that means compensating them competitively. That’s important for the carrier to succeed and its important for all workers to continue to retain their jobs.
But it’s also silly to believe that a substantial majority of nonunion workers at perhaps the weakest major airline in the country are indispensable and worth keeping at a higher than current cost.
Even a money-losing carrier seeking wage concessions from its unions should make raises available to the top performers needed to emerge from a money-losing state. But they should take great care to reward only those employees who create superior value and not nonunion employees as a class.