IAMAW Canada – GVP Chartrand’s letter to Minister Alghabra on Canadian Airports and Mandatory Vaccination Policies

GVP Chartrand’s letter to Minister Alghabra on Canadian Airports and Mandatory Vaccination Policies

GVP Chartrand's letter to Minister Alghabra on Canadian Airports and Mandatory Vaccination Policies
16 September, 2021

By Email: Omar.Alghabra@parl.gc.ca

Honorable Omar Alghabra
Minister of Transportation
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario  K1A 0A6

Re: Canadian Airports – Mandatory Vaccination Policies

Dear Honourable Minister Alghabra,

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW) represent twenty two thousand workers in air transportation and aerospace in Canada. We represent a majority of workers at Canadian airports.

I am writing you today asking your help with a troubling issue about mandatory vaccination policies by Canadian Airports authorities, which are arm’s length from government. A number of Canadian airports are implementing vaccination policies, taking any possibility of consultation and negotiation on this critical health and safety issue away from unions. Any policy put forward without consultation with recognized bargaining agents could potentially be an infringement on our members’ rights, but more importantly, we are concerned about workers whose legitimate accommodation needs may be unrecognized.

If the federal government is going to mandate vaccinations in the federal sector, consultations are essential to ensure there are mechanisms for accommodation. The IAMAW believes that, your government presented this and has shed responsibility to involve individual union/employers and bargaining agents.

I am therefore requesting a meeting, as soon as possible, to discuss airport authorities mandating vaccine policies.

Thanks in advance for your consideration and assistance in this regard.

Yours Truly,


David Chartrand


C.c.       The Right Honourable Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
              The Honourable Minister of Labour Filomena Tassi

IAMAW CANADA – One More Obstacle to Airline Recovery

One More Obstacle to Airline Recovery

Today’s announcement made by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau presents yet another obstacle in the IAM’s fight to preserve the aviation industry, where our members and thousands of other workers are being left out in the cold without support. With the requirement for mandatory hotel-quarantine, at a cost estimated to be $2,000, the government has yet again raised the bar on restrictions faced by the transportation industry. This will further result in downstream impacts upon aerospace and maintenance providers.

We understand the need to take measures to protect public health, but we also point to the devastating impact on the industry, which makes finding a way to support air transportation all the more urgent. Yet still we have radio silence on supports for tens of thousands of middle-class workers who rely on this industry to feed their families.

The IAM has been calling on the Trudeau Government for almost a year to give some real assistance to these workers.

Just yesterday, we made an urgent plea to the Federal Committee on Transportation, Infrastructure and Communities: “There must be real federal supports for displaced transportation and airport workers, and they must be implemented immediately.”

The IAMAW is committed to working with all relevant stakeholders and, ultimately we call for development of a sector specific action plan with goals that will stimulate and rebuild the industry.

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW) is the leading union in the aerospace sector and air transportation industry. The IAMAW represents over 55,000 members across Canada, of which 22,000 work in the aviation, aerospace and air transportation sector. We represent members at Air Canada, Sunwing, Air Transat, Swissport, British Airways, Garda World, G4S, Menzies Aviation, AAS, ATS, Sky Café and others. Our members work across the aviation value chain, and have experienced the devastating effects of the global pandemic firsthand. We also represent workers in aircraft parts manufacturing, aircraft overhaul and repair, screening services across airports in Canada, automotive parts manufacturing, the hospitality sector, custom paint additives, industrial pump manufacturing, plastics manufacturing to woodworking.

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