(PURCHASE, N.Y.) – Holding signs reading “Our Families Deserve Better” and “Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings Pilots Ready to Strike,” pilots from major DHL and Amazon contractor Atlas Air are protesting outside the Purchase headquarters of their airline’s holding company, Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings (AAWW), to demand company executives stop denying them of a fair, industry-standard contract. This week marks the current contract’s amendable date – the date pilots are due a new contract by management.

The current contract provided for negotiations to commence 270 days prior to the amendable date. AAWW executives met with Teamsters Local 1224 to negotiate new contract terms, but abruptly stopped discussions this past spring. Since then, AAWW has steadfastly insisted that the Atlas Air pilots merge their contract with the recently-acquired Southern Air pilots’ existing bankruptcy contract rather than amend and modify their contract, as required by federal law.

AAWW owns three airlines that fly for DHL: Atlas Air, Inc., Polar Air Cargo, Inc. and Southern Air Holdings, Inc. The multi-million dollar company is trying to force pilots from the three carriers into a sub-standard contract that would have a devastating impact on pilots, their families and the entire cargo industry. As a result, AAWW pilots are increasingly leaving for better opportunities, and at a time when a pilot shortage is becoming an industry-wide concern, the company’s ability to keep up with the demands of DHL, Amazon and other customers could be at risk.