Canada’s flight attendants’ union used this week’s International Flight Attendant Day to call on Ottawa to come forward with a plan to restart the industry.
CUPE notes that the majority of its 15,000 flight attendant members have been laid off since the pandemic grounded most flights in March 2020.
“Workers deserve to hear how and when the Trudeau government will help our battered industry rebound,” said Wesley Lesosky, President of CUPE’s Airline Division, which represents flight attendants at nine Canadian airlines.
“We acknowledge the rules and public health concerns vary from province to province,” added Lesosky. “That’s why we’re calling on the federal government to show leadership and begin charting a path alongside other levels of government, in order to begin safely reconnecting our communities and bringing back good jobs in this industry.”
The union continues to support pre-boarding rapid testing as one of the best ways to create a safe air environment for crew and passengers on flights.
CUPE adds that it believes that COVID-19 safety protocols, including provision of PPE, enhanced ventilation, and mandatory masking for passengers and crew should continue until all cabin crew have been fully immunized, and until government health officials declare the pandemic is over.