The Canadian Union of Public Employees, based in Vancouver, has called on Air Canada to end its “reliance on – and abuse of – unpaid work by flight attendants” following its healthy profits.
9,500 Air Canada flight attendants are represented by this union, who states the average flight attendant in Canada works unpaid for 35 hours every month because airlines like Air Canada only pay flight attendants while the aircraft is in motion.
The argument made by the unions also is that the airline is more than capable of giving staff a payrise, and dubs the current pay as “poverty-starting wages”.
Vancouver Union on Air Canada Profits: Workers are Getting Crushed…
Adding to these statements was Wesley Leosky, the President of the Vancouver-based Air Canada Component of the Canadian Union of Public Employees:
“The great news is our customers are back, and the planes are full.”
“The bad news is the workers who keep this airline flying are getting crushed by inflation, while the airline still depends on hours of our free labour every month to keep the airline operating”.
“Our members are highly-trained safety professionals, but our starting wages are so low that our members working fulltime still qualify for and depend on federal income supplements like the Canada Workers Benefit”.
“This means duties critical to safety and passenger well-being like assisting passengers during boarding and deplaning as well as pre-flight safety checks are not paid”.
“These huge profit margins reported are built on the backs of the airline not paying our members a fair wage – simple as that.”
With the starting salary of a flight attendant at Air Canada Rouge being $26,487 in the first year, these are refreshed calls for pay to increase respectively, especially as global inflation continues to rise.