Copa's airlines Colombia pilots refuse overtime amid dispute


BOGOTA, Oct 10 (Reuters) - Pilots at the Colombianoperations of U.S.-listed Copa Airline have begunrefusing overtime to press demands for a pay rise, their unionsaid on Thursday, following similar actions by pilots atColombia's Avianca and some local pilots from Chile's LAN.

The union said 131 pilots from the local unit of thePanamanian company, Copa Colombia, were taking part in the "ZeroOvertime" movement amid a 20-month long labor dispute which hasalready been submitted to an arbitration tribunal.

The airline, which operates 10 domestic routes in Colombiaand flies to 10 international destinations, said in a statementit was making efforts to resolve the dispute.

"Copa Colombia confirms ... its intention to reach anagreement beneficial to the parties and one that at the sametime ensures the company's sustainability," it said in astatement.

On Oct. 4 a minority of pilots at the Colombian subsidiaryof Chile's LAN began similar action to press acomplaint that the airline discriminated against pilots who wereunion members, paying them as much as $4,200 less per month thannon-members.

Similar action by pilots at Avianca in September, owned byAvianca Holdings, caused some disruption to thecompany's flight schedule and ended after three weeks with an 11percent pay increase for pilots in their main union, Odeaa.

Members of the minority union, Acdac, representing 43percent of the pilots have rejected the offer and continue torefuse overtime hours.

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