The European Cockpit Association (ECA) was created in 1991 and is the representative body of European pilots at European Union (EU) level. It represents over 38,000 European pilots from the National pilot Associations in 37 European states. In addition, ECA has 2 Associate Members from outside the European region.
"The European Cockpit Association represents the collective interests of its Member Associations at European level, striving for the highest levels of aviation safety and fostering social rights and quality employment for pilots in Europe."
Since the advent of the Single European Aviation Market, air transport is no longer a purely national domain. European policies are made in all areas of aviation that affect pilots, such as safety, flight crew licensing, air operations, fair competition, international air traffic agreements, air traffic management, aircraft maintenance, employment conditions, etc. In line with its mission statement and aviation safety being its prime concern, ECA strives to ensure safe and sustainable growth of the air transport industry across Europe, based upon clear, harmonised and enforceable rules throughout the EU.
Moreover, since 2000, ECA is a recognised Social Partner in the EU's Sectoral Social Dialogue. This allows us to develop - jointly with European employers' organisations - common positions, recommendations and agreements that can have legally binding effect throughout the EU. An example is the Agreement on Air Crew Working Time. It was developed and signed by ECA and the other European Social Partners and subsequently converted into EU-wide legislation.
ECA pursues its aims by:
- Active involvement with the European Institutions regulating the European air transport, such as EASA, the European Commission, European Parliament and Council of Ministers, as well as EUROCONTROL and ECAC;
- Monitoring European legislative and policy developments and advising our members accordingly; preparing opinions and positions for the European regulators and providing expertise in the many consultative bodies set up at European level;
- Participating in the European Social Dialogue for the Air Transport Sector;
- Closely liaising with Brussels-based, aviation-related trade union organisations and other major stakeholders in the field of aviation;
- Supporting and assisting our Members in their industrial actions, and in coping with the industrial and legal challenges created by the emergence of transnational airlines (TNA);
- Conducting research on aviation related topics which our Member Associations use, e.g. during contract negotiations with their companies;
- Organising meetings, seminars, press-conferences to discuss pan-European industry and social issues related to the aviation industry;
- Closely coordinating our activities and positions with the International Federation of Air Line Pilots' Associations (IFALPA).
If you wish, you can download the ECA Constitution here.