Air Transat flight attendants accept savings plan
March 11, 2013, Montreal - The union representing Air Transat flight attendants announced that its members have agreed to the company's proposed cost reduction plan. In a secret electronic vote, 66 per cent of the flight attendants accepted measures worth approximately $9 million a year. At 72 per cent, turnout was particularly high.
The key element of the plan stipulates that the number of attendants on the A330 will be reduced from 11 to 10. The savings thus realized will help enable Air Transat to develop a narrow-body fleet of Boeing 737s, which the union believes will allow the company to retain more jobs in the long run.
"In recent months, we have studied the different scenarios very closely. The flight attendants took part in a number of information sessions," noted Peter Buzzell, president of the Air Transat Component of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE).
"Air Transat's position in the industry has been somewhat precarious for some time. For the union members, this means making hard choices. We have accepted a sacrifice that gives the company an opportunity to grow and maintain jobs in the long term. Our concern for such a balance influenced our decision," said the union leader.
Air Transat flight attendants are emergency specialists whose primary role is to ensure passenger safety. Approximately 1750 in total, they are divided into three local unions corresponding to their three bases: CUPE 4041 (Montreal-YUL), CUPE 4047 (Toronto-YYZ) and CUPE 4078 (Vancouver-YVR). The Air Transat Component oversees these three local unions.