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Sunday,  July 14, 2024 3:49 AM 

Air Canada pilots request federal conciliation in contract negotiations

  • Air
  •   06-18-2024  11:03 am
  •   Pax Global Media

Air Canada pilots request federal conciliation in contract negotiations
(Air Canada)
Pax Global Media

Air Canada pilots represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA) filed on Monday (June 17) a notice of dispute and request for conciliation assistance with the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service regarding collective bargaining with Air Canada.

The union and management have been in negotiation discussions since June 2023.

“Air Canada continues to undervalue the contributions of this pilot group to the success of the airline,” said Charlene Hudy, chair of Air Canada’s ALPA Master Executive Council (MEC). “We remain too far apart on reaching a new collective agreement. Management’s proposals continue to fall substantially short of the contract metrics recently ratified at comparative airlines, like United, Delta, and American, and fails to correct the significant pay sacrifices Air Canada pilots made post-9/11 to contribute to the survival of Air Canada—now one of North America’s most profitable airlines. Air Canada is the only legacy air carrier in North America that hasn’t returned their pilot pay to pre-9/11 levels.”

With this request for conciliation, the Minister of Labour now has 15 days to appoint a conciliation officer.

Once appointed, the conciliator will work with the parties for 60 days to reach an agreement.

If both parties remain at an impasse following conciliation (unless the parties agree to an extension), a 21-day cooling-off period would begin before the parties can engage in self-help.

This impasse, which comes at the start of Air Canada’s busy summer season, sets the path for a possible strike vote.

“Air Canada pilots remain fully invested in our passengers, our airline, and our country, and although we want to avoid strike action, we will do what is necessary under the Canada Labour Code to ensure we achieve the contract we deserve,” said Hudy. “Currently, Air Canada pilots are paid approximately half what other legacy airline pilots are paid in North America, and have the worst working conditions in this category.”

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