CAW, IAMAW and CALDA Reach Tentative Agreement with Air Canada, Protecting Pensions

June 9, 2009, 12:20 AM EST

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After weeks of intense negotiations three unions -CAW, IAMAW and CALDA -have reached a tentative agreement with Air Canada.  The agreement was reached with the assistance of federal government appointed mediator Justice James Farley whose mandate was to help the unions solve challenges related to pension funding. 

Included in the portion on pensions is an agreement with Pionairs, the group representing more than 15,000 retired Air Canada workers.

"We went into these negotiations with the goal of protecting our pensions, our collective agreements and job security without making concessions and we've been successful," explained IAMAW District 140 President and Directing General Chairperson Chuck Atkinson.

The agreement includes a 21 month past service funding deferral on the pension plan and a number of non-monetary improvements meant to address work-life issues.  The Defined Benefit pension plan remains intact with benefits protected and no other concessions were made.

"Our primary aim was to protect the future of our employees and retirees, and this has been achieved by safeguarding the pension plan and the collective agreement," said CAW Local 2002 President Leslie Dias.

 "All of the unions recognized the financial challenges faced by Air Canada and showed determination to make progress for their members, even during difficult times," said Peggy Nash, assistant to the CAW National President.

The CAW's current collective agreement expired on May 31 and the agreements with the IAMAW and CALDA both expire at the end of this month.


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