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Southwest Airlines pilots approve 4-year deal, higher pay

DALLAS – Southwest Airlines Co. pilots have ratified a new four-year contract that includes higher pay and bonuses.

The Dallas-based carrier on Monday announced approval of the deal. About 84 per cent of Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association members who cast ballots voted in favour of the agreement.

The contract includes an immediate 15 per cent pay raise.

Contract negotiations began in 2012. Mediated talks started in 2014. Pilots last November rejected another proposed contract.

Union president Capt. Jon Weaks says members thought the latest agreement was the right thing for them and their families. The association represents about 8,400 pilots.

Flight attendants at Southwest last month narrowly ratified a new contract.

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This story has been corrected to show that the union president’s name is spelled Jon, not John.