Recovery

Hello! So I had a question regarding MAJORS hiring people in recovery. Im 23 and have an almost 2 year gap in my work history from being in and out of recovery, for alcohol. And I don’t want to make something up about that gap, I want to be honest. I’ve got a year and a half now sober, and have grown past the things that were hindering my from being sober. Now I’ve moved onto what I wanna do with my life for a career. Will the fact that I’m in recovery keep me from getting a job in ANY airline? Even the small ones?
How would an interview go if they know I’m in recovery? Will my coworkers (if I got a job) look at me differently and not trust me?

Jeffrey,

You’re 23 and at that young an age an employment gap is not that unusual. Factor in the fact if you were to start training TODAY, you wouldn’t be looking at interviewing for a Major for probably 5yrs+ minimum creating even more distance and giving you time for solid employment.

The biggest issue I see is you’ve got some hurdles to get over before you even get your FAA Medical. The FAA is very cautious when it comes to addiction and your issuance will take you some time and effort as they will most certainly want to go through your treatment records and probably want some monitoring. All of which again can take some time.

I recommend you contact an AME who will probably recommend a HIMS AME and they can give you a better idea of what lies ahead.

Adam

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Jeffrey,

A few years ago, I would have told you that there was no chance at all, but things seemed to have changed. I recently flew with a newly hired pilot that had actually been through alcohol recovery and in fact disclosed that in his interview. Now he was part of the union’s program, which probably helped his case.

I will say that you will probably need more time being sober, which you should have at the end of your time building.

Do you have any DUIs or charges related to your substance abuse? Those can be an issue.

Your first step would be to apply for a FAA First Class Medical, they will ask about your past issues and you could very well be subject to a lengthy review process. I would also recommend calling the recruitment departments of several regional airlines and asking them how they will perceive this issue.

Chris

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I’m at stage 0 of the pilot pipeline process. I have no licenses and just wanted to know if it’s worth pursuing given my situation. And no, I don’t have any DUI’s. No charges of any kind.

Jeffrey,

As I said above, provided you’re willing to take the steps necessary to even start the process I believe you’ll be fine.

It will require a tremendous amount of work and a fair amount of money and effort and there are no guarantees. Whether it’s worth it or not is entirely your decision. For me it was the best decision of my life but not everyone who pursues this career agrees.

Adam

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Right. I understand that it’s going to be a great deal of money, that’s why I’m here asking questions. And thank you for answering them. Hopefully in time I can say the same as you in regards to enjoying what I do.