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

President’s Message – March 2007

President’s Message for March 2007

Today is Friday March 2nd and it’s been exactly one month since I took office and a very busy month it has been.

The Union has extended its willingness to work with the Company and the Company has so far responded in kind.  Time will tell if the Company truly wants a long-term positive and harmonious working relationship.  Arbitrator Teplitsky has also put the Company and Union on notice to quote “work it out”.  The Union is 100% committed to achieving our goals in this respect.

The Union has hoped to have received Arbitrator Joliffe’s decision on the Wage Re-Opener by the end of February.  We will advise you as soon as we have that decision.

The Company implemented changes to the way our members bid their vacation this year.  The changes occurred prior to my taking office and the Union was not involved nor consulted in regards to how these changes would affect our members.  The Union does not believe the process was “thought through” AT ALL, and now, we have a system with problems surfacing as the bids progress.  The Union was not informed of the potential for problems but we are working with the Company through these issues as they occur.

As per the Component by-laws, our first Component Executive meeting following elections will take place on March 6th, 7th and 8th.  I am very much looking forward to meeting all the base Presidents and having open discussions on our collective plans for the future of our Union.

International Women’s day is March 8th.  I invite you to read the information bulletin that was written to the membership by the Chairperson of the Women’s Committee, Sheri Cameron.

The Union and the Company will be meeting on March 21 and 22 and entering into discussions on PBS. 

Some of the agenda items include, but not limited to:

            The finalization of Phase 1

            Split of Route Languages

            Parameters i.e. Block Hour Averages, Blocking Window, etc.

Collective Agreement Language Finalization:


            Phase II schedule

            Full Implementation Target Date

            PBS Audit

            Inclusion of CUPE in Decisions

Failing any agreement, a mediation process will take place with Arbitrator Teplitsky.

President’s Hotline Message

The President’s Hotline Message can be accessed by calling 1(800)735-2676 or locally (416)258-1175.

Every month a new President’s Hotline Message will be recorded in order to update the membership on current Union issues.

Component Open House

Come visit the Component Officers and Staff at 25 Belfield Rd., Etobicoke on Thursday April 26, 2007, between 11:00am and 2:00pm

Component Grievance Committee

A warm welcome to two (2) new members of the Component Grievance Committee.  They are Theresa Mitchell and Gerry Lavallee.

ATSU/CSU/COPE Potential Strike

CUPE National and the AC Component of CUPE employ staff union workers from the above unions.  Tonight, at midnight, this group will be in a legal strike position.

The Air Canada Component of CUPE and our Local’s give our staff union members our full support and will not cross any picket lines.  CUPE National, the employer, is asking for concessions to pensions and benefit plans.  In light of this impending strike, we will have to make alternate plans to continue to service our membership.  Some of our normal day-to-day operational functions will be very limited; however, the Component Officers and Component Committees will continue to communicate to you via voicemail and e-mail.

This labour dispute will not affect the day-to-day operations of your Local Base Union Offices.  We will keep you informed through the President’s Hotline Message at 1(800)735-2676 or (416)258-1175 and the Component website at

The Component has sent a message to CUPE National urging them to act as a Union and NOT an employer with their very own unionized workers.  It sends the wrong message to corporate employers and is contrary to the very heart and soul of the entire labour movement.

In unity,


Lesley Swann

President, Air Canada Component of CUPE