Hi, I had a chance to be interviewed by the AOA News Network (ANN), which can be heard/seen by double-clicking here.
You can try the QuickTime file "Troubleshooter" here
If that's all too hard, here's the transcript!
Best regards - Nigel Demery
I recommend that you view the debate and Mid Campaign Message.
These points are amplified in my original manifesto and video
A QuickTime file "Troubleshooter" can be found here
Presidential Election 2002
Hi Nigel, only 2 weeks of voting to go, is there anything new on the election front?
Yes there is, Shelley. Both of my opponents in the election have published closing comments as part of their election manifestos. There’s also a video stream on both the AOA and my websites of the Meet The Candidates debate that covers the major issues.
There are also video streams of last week’s Association meetings. It was interesting to hear an outsider, one of our Oneworld Cockpit Crew Coalition, who said:
“In relation to the IFALPA hiring ban, if you decided for the ban to be lifted, I think you would be sending a message to the world that Cathay’s management’s behaviour is acceptable. I think that once that ban is in place it is an open wound, an open sore that is publicly seen throughout the world, through IFALPA, that what they are doing is wrong and unacceptable”
Do you have any comments on your opponents’ words that you can share with us?
I feel that there is a risk that any negative campaigning stands a risk of being divisive to our Membership and I don’t believe that it has a place in this election.
I believe that this election has been pitched at a mature level and should continue to be issue based. I wouldn’t be comfortable with voters basing their decision on a fear tied to unsubstantiated speculation. For example, both my opponents have speculated that, should they not be elected, then we can expect 200 Members to resign from the union. Now I don’t really want to know where that figure comes from but it is not really the point.
I believe that a candidate has a responsibility to give the Members something to vote FOR rather representing themselves as a means of stopping something happening. In other words, a candidate should provide a viable strategy to achieve a solution and not, in my humble opinion, frighten our Membership with unsubstantiated speculation. For example, one of the candidates is now suggesting not to vote for me because I will bring confrontation. That’s rubbish.
The point is that we were VERY reasonable in our position last year but management chose unreasonable escalation and confrontation rather than effective dialogue. Management chose not to seek resolution last year after 6 months’ negotiation until 1st July, after 3 days of Talks About Talks in September, and after a further formal meeting in October. You have to ask yourself “Why”. It is misleading to imply that talks in April identified a 3rd party who could ensure, and I repeat, ensure “fairness and transparency”. We’ve publicly called for a mediator and management have rejected that. It is also misleading to say April talks faltered because of the current strategy; they faltered because management did not respond properly to the Probes.
Basically, management have not responded properly since we had them in the Labour Department in December, 18 months ago, because they have a confrontational priority: to bust the union.
I understand there is some common ground between the candidates on some issues?
That’s correct, Shelley. All three candidates now share the same position on our current legal strategy. Initially both my opponents stated positions that advocated the removal or review of the legals in an attempt to entice management to the table. We’re now in tune that the legals should continue.
Additionally, both Peter and I are advocating to the membership that, whomever wins the election, the Members must not quit if their candidate is not elected. This is a democracy and a democracy is weakened if members abandon the system. Management would love this election to become divisive rather than the medium it truly is – a vote on issues and on how to proceed for the next year.
That is certainly a strong message for the Membership Nigel. What do you see as the basic platform now for each candidate?
Well I wouldn’t presume to speak for the other candidates. They can do that for themselves.
I see my own platform as one of continued evolution of our union. We have come to realize that our efforts here are part of a combined resistance to global alliance pilot bashing. We have gone from a career airline here at Cathay to a short-term contract airline with that contract abused as a matter of management habit. It just doesn’t make sense to me to forget everything that we have learnt and try to go back in time. We have to face the reality of the alliance world and decide; do we want a Lan Chile result or an Aer Lingus result? It’s just that simple.
If someone wants to beat you up you can choose to do nothing or you can choose not to appease. My position IS that I personally will do whatever it takes to get our 49ers treated fairly because they symbolise our contract. IF we don’t do that then there is no hope for any pilot because they will never be treated fairly or justly again and contract abuse will continue for ever. Why would management want to change?
My position is that, by not giving up, we will achieve a successful resolution - if we are patient and resolute.
Can I just say in conclusion, a vote for Nigel Demery is a vote for moving forward from our current consolidated position. It is a decision to reject this environment of intimidation and constant erosion of our contract. It is a step toward returning our great airline to career status.
16th July 2002
A QuickTime file "Troubleshooter" can be found here
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