October 13, 2021 at 5:00 PM
In the last round of bargaining, gains for Unifor members included significant improvement to wages for frontline workers at Air Canada. Unifor members saw immediate increases of $2/hour to start. Additionally, the Unifor bargaining committee negotiated a much-needed increase for our lowest wage earners. Increases on the wage scale would occur twice in a year, after the first full pay period after February 28, and another increase on the anniversary of company service.
Within 2 weeks of ratification of the new collective agreement, the world began to shutdown as the global pandemic reached Canada and began to close down our sector.
Unifor members were placed on income replacement programs (Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy – CEWS or Canada Emergency Response Benefit – CERB) as Air Canada grounded 90% of its flights. In early June of 2020, Air Canada announced unprecedented layoffs in all bargaining units, as did the entire global aviation industry.
In 2021, we began to see a slow recall of Unifor members as the industry started to open for business, but not without setbacks. To date we are closer to having all Unifor 2002 members at Air Canada recalled. Payroll concerns have been met with much confusion, and an understaffed, overwhelmed Employee Care Team, were seriously delayed in responding to payroll and company service date inquiries. The bargaining committee has confirmed with Air Canada, that even the laid off members would receive the annual increase, and the company service increase would be per Article 5.03 of the collective agreement, "scheduled advancement in pay within the salary scales established by this agreement shall be upon the first day of the pay period following completion of service of each period of 52 weeks." The wage table below shows 10 steps of wages vertically, and an annual increase horizontally.
Article 5.03 states "scheduled advancement shall be upon the first day of the pay period following the completion of service of each period of 52 weeks."
Members that were put on layoff will be given an adjusted service date equal to the time they were away from work until they were recalled.
If you did not hit an anniversary date before layoff on June 7, upon your return to work, you will need to accumulate the additional number of weeks required to complete 52 weeks needed to advance to the next step of the pay scale. If you did reach an anniversary date, before lay off, your next increase will occur on the first day of the full pay period after February 28, 2022. The annual increases will continue after the first full pay period following February 28th in each year of the agreement.
Undoubtedly, layoffs due to the pandemic have slowed progression through the pay scale. If you are unclear on the progression and how it works, please do not hesitate to speak to your workplace representatives or your regional bargaining representatives. Your adjusted company service date can be found on the Aeronet under your career history. This will indicate when you step down to the next level of the scale.
During the 2020 Bargaining, the Unifor bargaining committee was able to achieve one pay scale. The new scale will merge into one pay scale through the life of this agreement. The committee recognizes that the pay scale is not perfect as it affects members differently as they progress through the scale. If you have any questions how you should progress through the pay scale, please contact your local District Chairperson or Bargaining Representative.
Unifor made positive gains in this last contract, but not all contracts are perfect. The Union has, and always commits to making improvements during negotiations on behalf of the membership.
Air Canada Bargaining Committee
Steve Murphy – Pacific Region
Joanne Goulet – Interim Chairperson, Western Region
David Peng – Central Region
Benoit Lapointe – Eastern Region
Cheryl Robinson – Atlantic Region
Tammy Moore – President¬ Unifor Local 2002
Frances Galambosy – Unifor National Service Representative, Airline Sector
Leslie Dias – Unifor Director, Airlines Sector
21-10-13 Air Canada Wage update EN.txt