The Canadian Auto Workers Union (CAW) announced today an overwhelming vote to strike if necessary from its Air Canada inflight and flight operations crew schedulers members. No agreement has been reached from negotiations between the CAW and Air Canada that have been ongoing since May 22nd, 2011.
The vote showed that 96 per cent of inflight crew schedulers were in favour of going on strike if necessary while flight operations crew schedulers agreed with a 97 per cent vote in favour.
What’s frustrating Air Canada schedulers? Air Canada is planning on moving scheduling operations from Montreal to Toronto, which would cause the relocation of approximately 120 families. The CAW in response and support of its members states that it has offered Air Canada numerous solutions that would be more cost-efficient than the relocation and construction of a new centre, saving Air Canada time and money.
"Our members gave us a strong and informed mandate going forward. This sends a clear message to Air Canada to address our concerns and bargain a fair contract for our members," said Gaetano Amodeo, CAW chairperson at Air Canada flight operations.
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It’s clear that Air Canada crew schedulers do not consider strike opportunities on a passing whim as they have not taken a strike vote in over 21 years.
"Clearly it is time for the company to get serious and reach a fair collective agreement. Our members are extremely frustrated at what they see as an unnecessary and destructive move by the company to relocate approximately 120 people," said Frank Spinelli, CAW chairperson at Air Canada's inflight crew scheduling.