Coronavirus Update 46

NOTE: This bulletin applies to ALL members, both Mainline & Rouge

As governments are forced to make tough decisions in order to preserve fragile healthcare networks and protect vulnerable citizens, the company has likely taken the holiday period to ponder what to do. To date we have not seen any direction or any clear path forward.

Masks have consistently proven to be a crucial measure to protect against COVID-19, particularly the much more infectious omicron variant – regardless of airflow. Our members have filed hundreds of reports outlining how service is the number one cause of passengers being unmasked onboard, and how these current levels present a hazard.

The Union must point out the profound disillusionment and feeling of abandonment that its members are expressing regarding their employer. It appears that the concerns and entreaties from the front line are falling on deaf ears.

We believe that the company ought to be leading by example and proving to be a responsible corporate citizen by curtailing procedures that encourage risky behaviour. To us they appear to be impotent and unable to come to terms with the pandemic and take appropriate action. Despite what some may think, the pandemic is not over. It is here and it is moving like a wildfire through the membership and society on every level. We do not say this to instill fear or perpetuate misinformation. This is a fact.

In June 2020, we made it clear to the company that to best navigate the pandemic, they would need to remain nimble with a Plan B should the circumstances suddenly change. We find ourselves here now, with no clear leadership from Company executives.  Leadership, that up until the New Year appeared to believe that the pandemic could be wished away and forgotten with a smoke screen of linens, cheeses, and endless promotions.

The company continuously asserts that its customers want service and that they must compete to be relevant. Our members and all employees live in the communities that feed the company’s operation. We know their customers as well as they are our brothers, sisters, friends, and acquaintances. We can report that what they actually want is to know that their health and safety are protected, and they can travel from one place to another with the least amount of exposure to the COVID-19 virus.  This is especially true in the current Omicron climate.

Air Canada’s number one asset and selling feature has always been and should continue to be safety. Numerous other Canadian carriers have reduced their onboard service prior to or during the holidays (Air North, Calm Air, Air Transat, Sunwing, PAL).

In that light, the Union is calling on the company to make the following changes effective immediately:

  • Bottled water and Cleancare kits as well as a bagged snack only on flights under 2.5 hours.
  • All-inclusive tray and bottled water/canned beverages only in premium class on North America flights over 2.5 hours and signature international.
  • Can/Bottled beverage service only in North America economy class over 2.5 hours and international.
  • Elimination of 2nd bistro service in North America, and reduction to 3 options only to expedite service.
  • Elimination of mid-flight and pre-landing service on all flights except ultra-long-haul.
  • Water service twice per flight using bottled water on overseas and long-haul. No water service on domestic flights.
  • Elimination of alcoholic beverages in all classes.

In closing, the company continuously refers to its risk assessments to justify service. As part of your right to know, it needs to be stated that we believe that the company’s own safety personnel and medical experts get overridden by service delivery and marketing representatives. This is no way to assess, let alone mitigate the risk of COVID-19 and to do so in a meaningful way. This only leads to more documented concerns about the company’s risk assessment process by the Union.

Our diverse population means that families are scattered across the globe. After two years of this pandemic, people want to travel, and they want to do so safely. Our members are there for them and each workday, they put themselves right on the front line. We are asking the company leadership to truly understand onboard realities.  If they can continue to assert that nothing needs to change, we counter that assertion in no uncertain terms. In order to protect all of the travelling public, their important customers and most crucial of all, their valued employees, change must come, and it must be swift. There is no room for inaction.  In closing we leave you with the words of Dale Carnegie.

“Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage.”

In solidarity,

COVID-19 Reporting Requirements

With the growing number of members contracting COVID-19, we would like to remind you of the reporting requirements.

If You Get Sick
In the absence of flight notifications from the government and contact tracing, many of our members have been robbed of their right to know about workplace exposure.

If you suspect that you have COVID-19 and use the antigen tests provided by the Company or your provincial government, it is still a requirement that you take a PCR test. The confirmation results of your PCR test in email format or text and the accompanying provincial requirement are the documents that you are required to forward on to WCB/WSIB/CENNST and WIP.  The more documentation you have the better it is to ensure a seamless application process for loss wages.

Please remember if you have been at work and are uncertain of your point of contact, you must apply to both your provincial Workers Compensation Board and the WIP plan. You also must indicate when booking that it is a COVID-19 illness. If you book off mid cycle and test positive please follow the same procedure.

Please remember to indicate when booking off if you suspect contact at work as the employer will need to contact you and go over some questions as a formality.

The Union’s bulletin on reporting can be consulted HERE, and the FAQ document on reporting can be consulted HERE.

DO NOT COME TO WORK SICK!

1) If you have been working, it is important to document illness using an injury/illness e-report (see instructions in bulletins linked above to access the SIMS reporting system). Ensure to document any ways you could have contracted the virus while at work to the best of your abilities including general and specific.

2) Book off stating injury on duty.

3) Consult your Union Local for assistance filing workers compensation.

4) WIP disability insurance is available for those who fall ill and do not file for workers compensation. See www.accomponent.ca > Resources > WIP

You can reach out to the Union at any time.

In solidarity,

Component Holiday Message 2021

We want to take some time to thank all of our members who are working tirelessly around the globe and those who are on various leaves and are left to support family members. In many instances this work is done while many personal sacrifices are being made.  Our members are one of the few who do not have the luxury of a long break during the Christmas and New Year period. In fact, some are away and working through the entire period.  We all knew that was the deal when getting into this career, but no one could have forecasted the additional pressures that COVID has brought to us.  Your continued perseverance and dedication to bringing Canadians home and abroad is nothing short of courage in the line of fire. We will not dwell on all the trials and tribulations onboard as you know them all too well. We can only acknowledge and understand that this career is asking so much of so many during the pandemic. Your can-do attitude during these unique times has been nothing short of inspirational.  We are humbled and grateful to serve the membership at this time.

Wherever you are and whatever your burden is we hope that the New Year will bring us all renewed hope, optimism and a lighter load to carry.  We have endured so much in the past 18 months together and we promise that your Union will continue to be here for you whatever the future holds.

In anticipation of the work required during the holidays and the potential need to be aware of your contractual rights we have updated our Contract Guides (Click here for Mainline & Click here for Rouge) and our Reserve Handbook (CLICK HERE). We believe that through the education of our members about the Collective Agreement, the collective knowledge will benefit us all. We wish the very best of the holiday season to you and your families.  Your entire Union team will be available to you during the holiday period.

As a reminder, please contact your Local office (contact info below) for general questions, contract questions and concerns, or potential grievances.

Local Contact Information

Local 4091 – Montreal
Office Hours: Dec. 20th to 23rd : 09:00-16:00
Dec. 24th to 26th : Available by Email 
Dec. 27th to 31st : 09:00-16:00

Guillaume Leduc, President
info@local4091.ca
975 boul. Roméo Vachon Nord
Bureau 465
Dorval, QC  H4Y 1H1
Map to Local 4091 Office
Phone: 514-422-2235
Fax:     514-422-2471
www.4091.cupe.ca
Local 4092 – Toronto
Office Hours: Monday-Friday 09:00-17:00
Denis Montpetit, President
office@local4092.ca
Toronto Pearson Int’l Airport
Terminal 1 Service Level Rm EBS 116
Mississauga, ON  L5P 1B4
Map to Local 4092 Office
Phone: 905-676-4293
Fax:     905-676-4763
www.local4092.ca
Local 4094 – Vancouver
Office Hours: Monday-Friday 09:00-16:30
Carolyn Bugnon, President
officers@local4094.ca
6001 Grant McConachie Way
Richmond, BC  V7B 1K3
Map to Local 4094 Office
Phone: 604-295-4259
Fax:     604-270-5014
www.local4094.ca
Local 4095 – Calgary
Office Hours: Monday-Friday 09:00-17:00
Kim Wentzell, President
office@local4095.ca
Calgary International Airport
2000 Airport Road NE
Departures Level – between outside doors 7 & 8
Calgary, AB  T2E 6W5
Map to Local 4095 Office
Phone: 403-221-2625
Fax:     403-221-2753
www.local4095.ca
Local 4098 – Rouge
Office Hours: Monday-Friday 09:00-16:30
Craig Smith, President
contact@cupe4098.ca
Toronto Pearson Int’l Airport
Terminal 1, Level 2, GA2022
Mississauga, ON  L5P 1B4
Map to Local 4098 Office
Phone:  905-678-6330
www.cupe4098.ca

 

The 24/7 email address can be utilised for time sensitive and urgent situations: 247@accomponent.ca.

For after-hours emergency situations such as Health & Safety Work Refusals; Emergency Landings; Drug and Alcohol Testing; and Search and Seizure and Arrests please call our Emergency Help Line 1 (866) 758-3037.  In addition, your Component Officers can be reached at contact@accomponent.ca.

In solidarity,

Magical Moments (CHQ-rouge-20-03)

The Union filed a grievance alleging that Air Canada Rouge failed to adhere to Safety and Security Protocols by requiring members to pick up “Magical Moment” bags in the crew room and transport them through security and customs for delivery to passengers aboard the aircraft.

Last week, with the assistance of Arbitrator Bill Kaplan, the Company and Union agreed that members are not required to pick up and transport these bags.  Put another way, if you are asked to do so by the Company, you may decline.  You cannot be disciplined or punished in any way for exercising your right to decline – this guarantee is written in the settlement document. Click HERE to read the full settlement.

Please keep in mind that if you are asked, and wish to decline, you must make your decision known to the employer as soon as possible.

In solidarity,

National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women in Canada

This year in Canada we once again mark the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. We will take time and remember the 14 innocents who were murdered because they were women. This happened at École Polytechnique in Montreal on December 6, 1989.

This heinous act brought the dangers of violent misogyny to the forefront of Canada’s consciousness.  Whether is it outright or subtle misogyny it cannot stand.  We must remember the high price that was paid by these women and their loved ones.

The United Nations has identified a “shadow pandemic” which outlines the fact that since the outbreak of COVID-19, all types of violence against women and girls, particularly domestic violence, has intensified.

https://www.unwomen.org/en/news/in-focus/in-focus-gender-equality-in-covid-19-response/violence-against-women-during-covid-19

We stand in unity and remember the fourteen women who were killed on December 6, 1989:

Geneviève Bergeron
Hélène Colgan
Nathalie Croteau
Barbara Daigneault
Anne-Marie Edward
Maud Haviernick
Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz
Maryse Laganière
Maryse Leclair
Anne-Marie Lemay
Sonia Pelletier
Michèle Richard
Annie St-Arneault
Annie Turcotte

May they rest in peace and may we all make strong commitments to support and to not forget our history. We can make small and big changes in our lives and can raise awareness. Some of these changes can be to raise daughters to only accept respect, raise sons to respect women and girls and to challenge misogynistic actions in our lives and beyond. If we can all commit to and work together to make the world a safer place for women and girls, we will put our grief and remembrance into action and then we will have truly made a difference.

In solidarity,