The Union filed a grievance in 2019 as a result of Air Canada’s failure to respect the intent of PBS with respect to seniority rights in relation to those with languages. (Click HERE to see grievance form)
The grievance proceeded to Arbitration on September 28, 2022 before Arbitrator Flaherty. We are happy to advise you that on November 7, 2022, Arbitrator Flaherty released her award which allowed the grievance. No remedy was provided through her award and she remitted the matter of remedy back to the parties. An excerpt from her award is included below. (Click HERE to see the full award)
“The grievance is allowed. For the reasons provided, I find that determining route language requirements is within the Company’s management rights. There is no basis to conclude that it has exercised these management rights unreasonably. However, in assigning up to 40% of positions to route language-qualified crew, the Company must respect those employees’ seniority rights. Rather than imposing language coverage awards on the most junior qualified crew member as required by article B4.02.02.04 of the collective agreement, the PBS imposes these awards on block holders, who tend to be the more senior employees. The Company has violated the collective agreement by failing to properly consider seniority in assigning language coverage awards.
In the circumstances, it is appropriate to remit the issue of remedy to the parties. I remain seized in the event the parties are unable to resolve the remedial issues. The fact that it may be difficult to find a software solution should not prevent the parties from exploring this and other solutions, nor does not absolve the Company from its obligation to comply with the collective agreement.”
President, Air Canada Component of CUPE