Money WestJet's 500 Encore pilots officially join union; company 'disappointed'

09:41  02 december  2017
09:41  02 december  2017 Source:   Calgary Herald

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About 500 pilots with WestJet ' s regional carrier Encore have joined an international union . “We are disappointed by this outcome but we remain committed to working constructively with all WestJet employees,” WestJet CEO Gregg Saretsky said in a statement.

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Encore-Q400-with-Toronto-skyline-jpg.jpeg© Courtesy WestJet Encore-Q400-with-Toronto-skyline-jpg.jpeg

A culture change underway at Calgary-based WestJet Airlines has deepened after 500 pilots with its regional carrier Encore formally joined an international union.

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The Canada Industrial Relations Board, a quasi-judicial tribunal that reviewed the union drive, certified the Air Line Pilots Association as the bargaining representative for Encore pilots.

The move paves the way for the group’s first negotiations with management.

“We look forward to putting ALPA’s abundant resources to use and helping the Encore pilots gain a stronger voice in the decisions that impact their careers and collective future,” Capt. Dan Adamus, ALPA Canada’s president, said in a release.

WestJet, which once prided itself on a non-unionized corporate culture, has been forced to contend with an increasingly organized workforce.

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A majority of WestJet pilots have joined the same international employee group, while other union drives are underway by Unifor, the United Steelworkers and the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.

“We are disappointed by this outcome but we remain committed to working constructively with all WestJet employees,” WestJet CEO Gregg Saretsky said in a statement.

“Our core values and culture of ensuring a great guest experience will not change as we concentrate on the continued success of the organization.”

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The flight to Puerto Plata was delayed about five hours , the time it took to change crews in order to comply with rules that limit the number of hours in flight for pilots and attendants.Some of the 183 passengers received a $15 food voucher, while all of them received $100 credit toward a flight to make up for the inconvenience, Cabana said.

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