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Monday,  May 27, 2024 12:28 AM 

Work stoppage averted: WestJet & aircraft engineers' union reach tentative deal

  • Air
  •   05-06-2024  2:41 am
  •   Pax Global Media

Work stoppage averted: WestJet & aircraft engineers' union reach tentative deal
(WestJet)
Pax Global Media

Work stoppage averted.

The WestJet Group and the Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA), the union that represents WestJet aircraft maintenance engineers, announced a tentative agreement on the first collective bargaining agreement between the organizations early Monday (May 6). 

The update averts a work stoppage that could have started disrupting flights as early as Tuesday (May 7). Both parties now await the ratification vote to be put forward to membership.

"The WestJet Group is pleased to have reached a tentative agreement that is industry-leading within Canada and recognizes the important contributions of our valued Aircraft Maintenance Engineers, making them the highest paid in Canada, while delivering industry leading work-life balance standards and strong commitments to job security," said Diederik Pen, president of WestJet Airlines and group chief operating officer, in a statement.

The AMFA and WestJet have been at the bargaining table since September 2023, negotiating pay, benefits and key provisions that define the work AMFA members must complete for the airline.

"After nine months of tough negotiating, we are proud to have reached a tentative agreement that will now be presented, through the ratification process, to the hard-working aircraft maintenance engineers and other technical operations employees who go above and beyond to maintain a best-in-class culture of safety for the WestJet Group," stated Will Abbott, AMFA National Region II Director, Chairman.

On Saturday, WestJet issued a 72-hour lockout notice to the union, opening the door for possible flight disruptions.

In anticipation of a possible work stoppage, the airline said it was preparing to reduce its flight schedules and activate flexible rebooking policies.

"We are grateful to have arrived at a deal, averting a work stoppage and any impact to our guests' valued travel plans,” Pen said Sunday. “We sincerely appreciate our guests' patience during this time and are pleased to move forward with an unwavering focus to providing friendly, reliable and affordable air service to Canadians for years to come, as one unified team."


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