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Delta pilots to picket in Atlanta and several other US cities on Thursday

In a media advisory, a union group said the pilots would be protesting protracted contract negotiations.

ATLANTA — Pilots with Delta Air Lines plan to picket at airports -- including in Atlanta -- this Thursday, according to the Air Line Pilot Association, International.

In a media advisory, the union group said the pilots would be protesting protracted contract negotiations as they want to send a "clear message" to the airline's management team that "it's time for an industry-leading contract."

The news comes as customers have been dealing with flight woes, impacting their travel plans in recent weeks. The Atlanta-based airline even announced last month it would be cutting about 100 flights daily around its network starting in July and extending through the beginning of August. The pilots planning to picket also comes just before the busy Fourth of July weekend. 

However, a Delta spokesperson said in a statement -- calling the move an "informational exercise" by some of its off-duty pilots --  wouldn't disrupt operations for their customers. 

"Earlier this year, Delta, ALPA, and a representative from the National Mediation Board restarted our mediated contract negotiations that had been paused for almost two years due to the pandemic," the statement said. "Our goal remains to continue providing Delta pilots with an industry-leading overall contract with the best compensation based on pay, retirement, work rules, and profit sharing."

"We’re also committed to making sure the contract language supports our ability to run a world-class operation, maintain a strong balance sheet, and invest in our business for our customers and employees alike," they added. 

Outside of Atlanta, other cities listed included Detroit, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, JFK International in New York, Seattle and Salt Lake City. They plan to picket for two hours at each location. 

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