Skip to main content

The Globe and Mail

Arbitrator sides with Air Canada in contract dispute

A person walks by Air Canada planes at Toronto Pearson International Airport on Friday, April 13, 2012.


An arbitrator has selected Air Canada's final offer on a five-year contract for mechanics and airport workers over one proposed by the union.

The decision by Michel Picher concludes a new collective agreement with the machinists union "following negotiations and mediated talks that took place over a period of 14 months," Air Canada said Sunday.

New hires will be placed in a pension plan that involves participation by the airline and other companies whose employees are represented by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers. The 8,600-member union represents mechanics, baggage handlers, cargo agents, aircraft cleaners and electricians. A settlement with Air Canada's powerful pilots union is still under arbitration.

Story continues below advertisement

The five-year contract expires on March 31, 2016.

"The new collective agreement maintains the current defined benefit pension plan for current employees," said Air Canada, adding that the deal "establishes a protocol for the sustainability of the pension plan taking into account any short-term funding pressures on the company."

A separate arbitrator, Douglas Stanley, will be making his decision within weeks on whether to choose the final offer submitted by airline management or the Air Canada Pilots Association. Those contract details will be closely watched because the pilots union opposes management's plans to start a low-cost carrier.

Report an error Licensing Options
About the Author

Brent Jang is a business reporter in The Globe and Mail’s Vancouver bureau. He joined the Globe in 1995. His former positions include transportation reporter in Toronto, energy correspondent in Calgary and Western columnist for Report on Business. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Alberta, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of The Gateway student newspaper. Mr. More


The Globe invites you to share your views. Please stay on topic and be respectful to everyone. For more information on our commenting policies and how our community-based moderation works, please read our Community Guidelines and our Terms and Conditions.

Please note that our commenting partner Civil Comments is closing down. As such we will be implementing a new commenting partner in the coming weeks. As of December 20th, 2017 we will be shutting down commenting on all article pages across our site while we do the maintenance and updates. We understand that commenting is important to our audience and hope to have a technical solution in place January 2018.

Discussion loading… ✨