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HomeCANADADeal Reached in Westjet Mechanics’ Strike, but Travel Disruptions Still Expected

Deal Reached in Westjet Mechanics’ Strike, but Travel Disruptions Still Expected

July 1: WestJet executives and the union representing striking mechanics have reached a second tentative agreement, effectively ending a strike that led to the cancellation of hundreds of flights.

The Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA) announced the agreement on their website late Sunday, attributing the successful negotiations to the solidarity of its members. The union highlighted that the new agreement offers significant improvements over both the current terms of employment and the terms in the first tentative agreement.

The second collective agreement, pending approval, includes an immediate 15.5% wage increase without affecting the WestJet Savings Plan, additional yearly wage increases over the five-year contract period, and enhanced overtime pay.

The union urged its members to return to work promptly to contribute their labor, which played a crucial role in reaching this deal. The negotiating committee expressed gratitude to the members, acknowledging their impactful presence during bargaining sessions and on picket lines.

WestJet also confirmed the tentative deal on their website, noting that the AMFA agreed to withdraw strike action as of 11:30 p.m. ET. The airline is now working to restore its full network, though flight disruptions are expected to continue in the coming week as aircraft are brought back into service.

WestJet president Diederik Pen emphasized the urgency of resolving the strike, citing the extensive damage to both the airline and Canadian travelers. He thanked passengers for their patience during the uncertain and stressful period.

The airline had faced challenges due to a “lack of clarity” from the federal government and decisions by the Canada Industrial Relations Board (CIRB). Despite these obstacles, both parties made essential concessions to find common ground and reach an agreement.

Since the strike began, 130 WestJet aircraft were parked at 13 airports across Canada, resulting in the cancellation of hundreds of flights since Thursday. By the end of Sunday, only 32 aircraft were operational, affecting an estimated 110,000 passengers.

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