Union Serves 72-Hour Strike Notice at Viking Air

January 17, 2012, 10:00 AM EST

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The Canadian Auto Workers union (CAW) served 72 hour strike notice today at the bargaining table with Viking Air.  The union has now set a strike deadline for 12:00 noon on Thursday, January 19.

"The skilled workers at Viking Air have been patiently waiting for well over a year for a new contract that addresses wages, benefits and job security issues," said CAW National Representative Gavin McGarrigle. "The union reached a new contract with Cascade Aerospace in Abbotsford last year without any disruption and that pattern should work for Viking Air as well," he added.

The workers at Viking Air voted 94 per cent in favour of strike action on October 28, 2011.

"We're going to work hard in bargaining this week to reach a fair deal as a strike at Viking Air will completely disrupt production and further delay deliveries of many new Twin Otter aircraft that are already behind schedule," said McGarrigle. 

The current collective agreement expired on October 31, 2010 and the parties will continue to bargain all week in Sidney, BC, starting today.

Viking Air (www.vikingair.com) is an aircraft manufacturing and repair firm based on Vancouver Island near Sidney, British Columbia.  Viking is re-starting production of the famed de Havilland DHC-6 Twin Otter aircraft.  With the new product, Viking will be the only manufacturer of complete aircraft in western Canada; the firm has also opened a satellite facility in Calgary, Alberta to deal with the expansion. 

CAW Local 114 (www.cawlocal114.com) currently represents a bargaining unit of 270 workers at Viking Air including aircraft mechanics, machinists, sheet metal mechanics, painters, welders, storespersons and labourers.

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