WestJet airport workers signing Unifor cards
WestJet airport workers have begun to sign Unifor membership cards, the latest workers at the airline to seek the advantages of being in a union.
Already, pilots have joined the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) and engaged in a settlement process to reach their first contract through mediation. Flight attendants have joined the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), and the Canadian Airline Dispatchers Association (CALDA) recently applied to be the union for WestJet dispatchers.
Now, after a series of meetings in Calgary, Vancouver, Winnipeg, Toronto and Halifax, WestJet customer service agents, guest service ambassadors, baggage service agents and operational leads are signing Unifor membership cards.
All this is good for WestJet workers, and passengers, according to new research.
Unions not only help ensure a better workplace for employees, they also help ensure quality of service and greater safety in the airline industry, a recent CBC News column by two industry researchers found.
“Airline employees play a crucial role in ensuring that air travel remains safe for everyone: from ensuring that planes are fit to fly and are properly staffed, to piloting them safely to their destination and evacuating passengers in the event of an emergency,” wrote Joan Sangster, Vanier Professor at Trent University, and Julia Smith, a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow at Rutgers University.
“We need airline workers to feel that they can speak out about safety issues without fear of losing their jobs. Unions help ensure that they can.”
By joining Unifor, WestJet airport workers will be able to gain just such a voice in the workplace and in the industry as a whole. We all benefit from that.
To read more about the research by Sangster and Smith and why unions are good for employees and passengers, click here.
To sign a Unifor card and to find out how you can help your co-workers sign a card, or if you have any questions, feel free to contact your Organizing Team:
Billy O'Neill, Unifor
[email protected] | 416-605-1443
Bruce Fafard, Unifor
[email protected] | 780-930-3086
Murray Gore, Unifor
[email protected] | 604-671-9141
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