While PAL Group executives make big city wages, it’s clear that they want to pay Newfoundlanders substandard wages. PAL Airlines pilots have spent more than two years fighting management for a fair market-rate labour contract, with little progress toward reaching a final deal—a fair collective agreement that represents what we, the pilots, bring to the success of our airline and our community.
We are committed to attaining an industry-standard collective agreement that provides:
Throughout the bargaining process, we have acted in good faith and in hopes of protecting our basic workplace rights and the standards under the law. Unfortunately, the PAL Group’s executives keep stalling and blocking efforts to reach a fair contract, even resorting to underhanded tricks, which is why we need the St. John’s local and greater aviation community to make it clear they stand with us.
Our latest round of negotiations comes after two years of clear examples of management bargaining in bad faith, intimidating pilots (and other employees), and improperly soliciting the interference of Canada’s Minister of Labour.
Our pilot group began negotiations with management in January 2020. While continuing to help the airline earn a profit, pilots are working under extreme duress, operating understaffed and without contractual job protections, and dealing with increased health risks due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After months of PAL executives’ questionable bargaining practices, our union filed for conciliation in October 2021, kicking off a three-month countdown for the PAL Airlines pilots to take labour action.
In a vote that would allow us to go on strike if management still refused to negotiate in good faith, the members participating voted overwhelmingly with a 100 percent mandate in favour of labour action. Management then sought assistance from the St. John’s–based Federal Labour Minister, who effectively stopped us from using the provisions provided to us under the Canada Labour Code by referring the essential services question to the Canada Industrial Relations Board CIRB. This action completely changed the negotiating dynamic and effectively brought negotiations to a halt, thereby perpetuating the difficult working environment we continue to endure as pilots at PAL Airlines.
Stand with us. Spread the word and join our fight for a fair contract.