Air Canada flight attendants are seeking assistance from a federal conciliator to assist in negotiations with the airline, after the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) filed the request with the Federal Mediations and Conciliation Services after reaching an impasse on several key issues with airline management.
The union represents more than 6,800 flight attendant members at the airline and Jeff Taylor, President of the AC Component of CUPE claims that the union’s proposals are reasonable.
He said: “The union’s proposals have been fair, but Air Canada seems intent on pushing for unreasonable concessions from its flight attendants. We are left with no choice but to ask for a conciliator’s assistance in the hopes they will help us and Air Canada find some common ground.”
The collective agreement between the flight attendants and Air Canada expired last March. Negotiations for a new contract have been underway since April 6, and all proposals from both parties have been presented.
AT THE HEART OF THE DISPUTE
The union proposals included wage increases and improvements in working conditions, while Air Canada is asking for several concessions which the union says would increase workloads, reduce health benefits, and make drastic changes to the pension plan.
“Our members have already done more than their fair share in helping Air Canada get to a secure financial footing, and now that the airline has returned to profitability management asks for even more,” says Taylor.
“Top Air Canada executives just gave themselves huge salary increases while at the same time trying to strip flight attendants of their pensions. It is outrageous and totally unacceptable.”