EL AL Airlines Workers in Toronto Contemplate Strike

TORONTO, June 16, 2011 /CNW/ - Frustrated by protracted negotiations over the last six months, unionized workers at El Al Airlines in Toronto have voted to give their bargaining committee a strike mandate.

The El Al employees, members of the United Steelworkers (USW), provide marketing, sales and reservations services from the airline's offices in downtown Toronto.

"Negotiations have been ongoing since our last contract expired on Dec 31, 2010," said Jacob Mazgaonkar, Steelworkers bargaining committee member and unit chair for the El Al workers.

"The airline is based in Israel, where it appears all bargaining decisions are made. It's been very difficult to negotiate when local management is not allowed to make decisions on proposals made by the union," Mazgaonkar said.

"A 'final' offer by the company was turned down and there are no further talks scheduled," Mazgaonkar noted. "As a result, our members have given the bargaining committee authorization to strike if necessary."

However, a request for assistance has been made to the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service and the union is hoping the agency can help the parties resolve the impasse and avoid a labour dispute, he added.

SOURCE United Steelworkers (USW)

For further information:

Jacob Mazgaonkar, USW Unit Chair and bargaining committee member
905-591-1665, mazgaonkar@hotmail.com.


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