days until our Collective Agreement expires, we are preparing, we are united and we will make change.

Gate Gourmet Workers Strike

We have had members writing to us about the current situation with Gate Gourmet employees from Teamsters Local 647 who are exercising their right to strike. Gate Gourmet provides catering services to many airlines in Canada. This includes some Air Canada flights.

Our members have voiced their concerns and their support for Teamsters Local 647 members. They report that they have been asked to assist managers in restocking bars and removing garbage among other things. Given that this scenario may be occurring on many flights we must ask if we are inadvertently circumventing the right to strike of our brothers and sisters who work with Teamsters Local 647 by mitigating the impact that the strike may be having. We suggest that all members check in on time and perform their duties as required, keeping in mind our primary role of ensuring safety and security is respected.

We have been asked by Teamsters Local 486 representatives to report any incident involving untrained replacement workers. They would like to be advised of any relevant information about safety and/or security breaches. As you know safety and security are paramount regardless of the circumstances. If you have any feedback or comments, please provide them to We look forward to hearing from you.

As some of our members may recall on January 30, 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada issued a landmark decision, holding that the right to strike is constitutionally protected. They found that the right to strike is an indispensable component of participating meaningfully in the pursuit of collective workplace goals.

Further they emphasized the importance of the right to strike in promoting equality in the bargaining process. The Supreme Court recognized the deep inequalities that structure the relationship between employers and employees. It is the possibility of strike action that enables vulnerable workers to negotiate with employers on terms of “approximate equality” in the context of a fundamental power imbalance. In the Court’s view, resorting to strike action at the moment of impasse is an affirmation of the dignity and autonomy of employees in their working lives. While a strike on its own does not guarantee the resolution of a labour dispute, the Supreme Court stated that strike action has the potential to place pressure on both sides to engage in good faith negotiations.

In solidarity,