Airport Security Must Not be Left to Lowest Bidder, says CAW President

February 16, 2011, 12:12 PM EST

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The CAW is raising concerns about the impact on the front line workers of a new bidding process for screening services at airports across Canada, recently announced by the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority.

The request for proposals is due on April 1. These changes will regionalize the delivery of screening services in Canada and will likely cause changes to some current service providers.

CAW President Ken Lewenza said that CATSA should be exceptionally careful not to simply choose the new firm based on the lowest bidder. "Airport security screeners provide a critical service in the maintenance of public safety and well-being," said Lewenza. "We do not want to see a situation created where working conditions become unstable and passengers' security is jeopardized."

"We urge CATSA to ensure workers are provided with job security and that working conditions are maintained despite possible changes to who their employer is. Workers' rights held in existing collective agreements must be respected."

Lewenza said that the CAW remains committed to speaking up for all airport security workers who deserve respect for the important job they do keeping Canadian airports safe. "During the bidding process, no one should forget the skilled and experienced men and women working on the front lines while others battle for monetary gain."

The CAW represents approximately 10,000 airport and airline workers across the country.

CATSA was created in 2002 as a Crown corporation and operates at arms length, reporting to Parliament through the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities.

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