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NATCA Applauds U.S. House Letter Calling for Maximum Air Traffic Controller Hiring, Collaborative Resources Workgroup Staffing Targets in FAA Reauthorization 

NATCA President Rich Santa Thanks 138 U.S. Representatives for Signing Bipartisan Letter to Congressional Leadership 

(WASHINGTON) – Today, NATCA thanked the 138 members of the U.S. House of Representatives who signed a letter to Congressional leadership that called for the inclusion of critical provisions to address air traffic control staffing shortages in any final Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization legislation.  

The provisions endorsed by the bipartisan signatories to the letter would secure maximum hiring of air traffic controllers for the next five years and require the FAA to base its Controller Workforce Plan (CWP) on the Collaborative Resource Workgroup’s (CRWG) staffing targets. The CRWG is a joint workgroup comprised of the FAA’s Air Traffic Organization and NATCA, whose work was verified and validated by the independent MITRE Corporation.  

“I would like to thank every member of the House of Representatives who wrote to lead negotiators, in both the House and Senate, to urge the inclusion of the critical provisions for air traffic controllers in the final, long term FAA reauthorization bill sent to the president,” said NATCA President Rich Santa. “I would specifically like to commend Representatives Yakym, Titus, Brownley, Hoyle, and Posey for their leadership and unwavering support for addressing the controller staffing shortage that has all too often led to the FAA requiring mandatory overtime by thousands of controllers throughout the system and added to the stress and fatigue experienced by controllers. 

These legislators understand how important it is to include these provisions so new trainees are brought into the FAA as soon as possible,” Santa said. “There is a path to solving this staffing crisis, but we must make sure we are taking the right first steps to ensure long-term success.” 

There are approximately 1,000 fewer Certified Professional Controllers than there were a decade ago addressed. The controller staffing shortage has led to the FAA implementing mandatory overtime to cover chronically short-staffed facilities. More than 40 percent of air traffic controllers regularly work six-day workweeks.

“Continuing to follow the same finance-based flawed controller staffing model utilized by the FAA after more than a decade of missed hiring goals and missed staffing projections will continue this trend.  A new approach is desperately needed,” Santa said. 


Galen Munroe, Deputy Director of Public Affairs; 202-220-9802, [email protected].


The National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) is a labor union and aviation safety organization in the United States that represents nearly 20,000 highly skilled air traffic controllers, engineers, and other aviation safety-related professionals. NATCA was certified in 1987 by the Federal Labor Relations Authority to be the exclusive bargaining representative for air traffic controllers employed by the Federal Aviation Administration. Today, NATCA is one of the strongest labor unions in the federal sector and represents a range of aviation safety professionals in 15 FAA bargaining units, five Department of Defense air traffic facilities, and 123 federal contract towers. These air traffic controllers and other aviation safety professionals make vital contributions to the U.S. economy and make modern life possible by coordinating the safe, orderly, and expeditious movement of one billion aviation passengers and millions of tons of freight within the National Airspace System each year. NATCA is headquartered in Washington, D.C., and is affiliated with the AFL-CIO.

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