TORONTO, June 19, 2011 /CNW/ - More than 120 CAW leaders and workplace
representatives at Air Canada voiced their unanimous approval at a
meeting in Toronto today, after reviewing the contents of the new
tentative agreement reached on June 16.
CAW Local 2002 President Jamie Ross expressed her appreciation at the
support of the workplace representatives across the country, along with
crucial support by CUPE, IAMAW, Air Canada Pilots Association members
and members of CUPW, CEP and the broader labour movement.
"We have waited a long time for this day," said Ross. "This was a very
difficult round of negotiations with Air Canada and I'm proud of the
agreement we reached on behalf of our members."
CAW National President Ken Lewenza said that he is pleased with what the
CAW was able to achieve for Air Canada workers at the bargaining table.
The new agreement includes wage increases, improvements to benefits and
maintains the defined benefit pension plan for current Air Canada
workers. The issue of the defined benefit pension plan for new hires
will be sent to a mediation process and then failing a resolve, will be
sent to a jointly-chosen arbitrator. Dates have not yet been set.
"I'm inspired by the activism of Air Canada workers, not just in the
time of the strike, but during the series of rallies and events that
took place across the country during negotiations," said Lewenza. "They
spoke up clearly in defense of good working conditions and pension
security for all and against the cutbacks in customer service for Air
Lewenza expressed his frustration at the interference of the federal
government in the collective bargaining process, only 16 hours into a
strike. "We were able to reach a negotiated settlement with Air Canada
and it is with absolutely no thanks to the federal government who were
only too happy to strip workers of their collective bargaining rights,"
"No worker or union member anywhere in the country should take this kind
of extreme interference lightly. I would urge new Federal Labour
Minister Lisa Raitt to instead start acting in the best interest of
both sides and allow parties to resolve their conflicts through the
collective bargaining process."
Ratification meetings will take place this coming week right across the
country, with results to be released on Monday, June 27, via CNW Group.
The new agreement would cover 3,800 CAW members who work in customer
service and sales in major airports and call centres. Negotiations
began on February 11. The collective agreement expired on February 28.
SOURCE Canadian Auto Workers
For further information:
For more information, please contact CAW Communications Director Shannon Devine (cell) 416-302-1699