Unifor: More travel restrictions make financial support for airlines more urgent

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Jerry Dias, Unifor National President
Jerry Dias, Unifor National President
Written by Harry S. Johnson

Further travel restrictions without providing financial support for airline workers is a risk to the very future of Canada’s airline industry

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In light of further travel restriction measures by the Canadian government, Unifor calls on the federal government to provide immediate financial support to the industry to prevent its total collapse.

“You can’t have one without the other. Further travel restrictions without providing financial support for airline workers is a risk to the very future of Canada’s airline industry,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President.

Today Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced further travel measures to stop the spread of COVID-19, including working with Canadian airlines to suspend all flights to Mexico and the Caribbean, new mandatory polymerase chain reaction testing at airports for people returning to Canada and a requirement that all returning travelers quarantine while awaiting COVID-19 results at a designated hotel at an expense exceeding $2000 per person.

“Though these measures are necessary to help flatten the curve, they also highlight the continued withering away of airline jobs. More than 300,000 workers are frustrated, wondering why their federal government refuses to present a plan to help them weather this pandemic.  Unlike other countries, Canada’s continued refusal to help this industry is making a bad situation worse,” said Dias.

This week, Dias presented Unifor’s national aviation plan to the federal Standing Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities. Dias stressed the urgent need to develop a national recovery plan for the aviation industry that includes financial support for workers and addresses the growing issue of precarious work in the aviation industry.

Unifor is Canada’s largest union in the private sector, representing 315,000 workers in every major area of the economy. The union advocates for all working people and their rights, fights for equality and social justice in Canada and abroad, and strives to create progressive change for a better future.

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