Assistance to air travel sector announcement results in cautious optimism

On Sunday November 8, 2020, Minister Marc Garneau, Minister of Transportation, released a statement advising of an assistance package for airlines, airports and the aerospace sector. Although this announcement is positive, it was short on details about what exactly the package will look like.

UCTE has been actively lobbying government since March 2020, the start of the pandemic about the need to protect the vital services performed by airport and Nav Canada workers. On its own and in collaboration with other unions, we have written letters to the Prime Minister and other parties, met with government representatives, written op-ed pieces and taken paid advertising all to raise awareness and push a commitment to protecting the air industry.

UCTE’s message has been clear. The air industry as a whole is more than just the airlines. It is a highly integrated network that is vital to the Canadian transportation system. Without properly funding this sector whose priority is the safety of people and goods across our country, the economic recovery from the pandemic will be a lot slower.

On November 9, 2020 UCTE, as part of the Nav Canada Bargaining Agents Association, met with staff of both Minister Garneau and Minister Tassi, Labour Canada, to discuss the need for assistance to Nav Canada and the entire air industry. UCTE also has scheduled meetings with the Transport Critics of all parties to raise the concerns of our members.

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