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Union says arbitration undermines bargaining

March 13, 2012, Ottawa - The union representing mechanics, baggage handlers and other ground crew at Air Canada says the federal government is taking away its rights.


March 13, 2012
By The Canadian Press

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers says Labour Minister Lisa Raitt's decision to send the union's contract talks with the airline to arbitration undermines bargaining.

The union says the back-to-work legislation put forth by the Conservative government already ensures there will be no work stoppage.

Under the "final offer selection'' arbitration process, the union and airline will both put forward their best offer and an arbitrator will pick one.

Raitt has said that the government needed to protect the Canadian economy and that's why it introduced the legislation.

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The IAMAW is the largest union at Air Canada and represents more than 8,600 workers at the airline.