Sunwing Flight Attendant Collective Agreement

Last month, an interim agreement was reached between Sunwing and the union representing its 900 flight attendants. This agreement replaces the previous agreement, which expired on 31 May 2016. The new agreement was ratified with 89.7% approval. The agreement is valid for one fifteen years. Sunwing flight attendants have given their union a strong strike mandate to force the company to accept the fair deal they deserve when negotiations resume on January 26. Today, 94.6% of CUPE`s 4055 members have given the green light to their bargaining committee for trade union actions up to a strike if deemed appropriate. “All Canadian airlines should use the wage subsidy program and negotiate an agreement with their respective unions,” said National Finance Minister Charles Fleury. “It is a matter of justice and respect for our flight attendants who, in this crisis, needed their professionalism among the last, despite the risks to their own health.” Sunwing flight attendants gave their union a strong strike mandate by 94.6 percent on January 26, according to the union. This new collective agreement improves the working conditions of nearly 1,000 Sunwing flight attendants. They work at Sunwing`s eight bases in Halifax, Quebec City, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Winnipeg, Calgary and Vancouver. The Canadian Auto Workers Union, which represents the 150 pilots, says the agreement was approved by a margin of 78 percent. “We want to negotiate fair business for both parties and continue to provide our passengers with a quality experience.

But if Sunwing doesn`t disagree with other improvements to our collective agreement, there is a risk of turbulence. This is not our first option, but we will not hesitate to use our strike mandate if necessary,” added Mr. Brancelj. On December 20, the members refused an interim agreement with the employer. In early January, the negotiating committee visited all Sunwing bases across the country to listen to members and hear further improvements to their collective agreement. “Sunwing cabin safety experts take care of their passengers. They want their employer to treat them with dignity and respect, and that starts with a collective agreement that will significantly improve their working conditions,” said Mark Brancelj, President of CUPE Local 4055. CUPE Local 4055 represents 1,000 flight attendants working at Sunwing`s eight sites: Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Halifax, Ottawa, Quebec City and Winnipeg. “Instead of violating our collective agreements, airlines should follow Flair Airlines` lead. They have used the wage subsidy program to rehire all licensed cabin crew members, but they also pay them a 25 per cent increase and benefits,” Hancock added. Members of the Canadian Union of Local Public Employees 4055 have ratified the new collective agreement between the union and Sunwing Airlines. It is also the first collective agreement for flight attendants after joining the Canadian Union of Public Employees last year.

The cabin crew collective agreement expired on May 31, 2016. Last month, CUPE and other Canadian airlines informed the federal government that any assistance packages should be developed in consultation with negotiators representing airline employees, in consultation with fare agents. The package should retain workers and return them to the wage list, protect the rights of collective bargaining and provide legal guarantees that government financial assistance will first be used to support workers` wages, wages and benefits.

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