Air Canada: First Dreamliner Touches Down, Union Opposes Outsourcing Three Routes
By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | May 20, 2014 2:49 PM EST
Air Canada has received its very first 251-seat Boeing 787 Dreamliner over the weekend. Air Canada has ordered a total of 37 of the new passenger jets. It will be used to open a route between Toronto and Haneda airport in Tokyo starting July.
Its arrival however faced strong disgust after the company's union representing some of its employees learned Air Canada will outsource two jets and staff to a foreign airline due to manufacturing delays experienced with the new planes.
On Friday, staff received a memo from management saying the company will replace flights to Madrid, Lima and Bogota with so-called "wet leases" - airplanes from EuroAtlantic Airways that come with foreign flight attendants and pilots.
"This was such a slap in the face. We were so disappointed Friday, especially when we were planning to go to this event. The 787 for us is the future of Air Canada, we've been waiting for this aircraft for years," Michel Cournoyer, president of CUPE's airline division, said.
"It's a shame that Air Canada, our national carrier, is outsourcing to foreign workers. Jobs should rightfully belong to Canadians. Now it's a very slippery slope. What's going to happen in the future?" Cournoyer added.
Peter Fitzpatrick, Air Canada spokesman, said the wet-lease decision was the only best option.
"We looked at using Rouge aircraft, but the Rouge aircraft are all full. There's a big demand for where they're going this summer, so we couldn't use those," Fitzpatrick told Star at the landing event for the 787.
"We also looked at using different airplanes with our own crews. Unfortunately that wouldn't work either because there was nothing available."
He also said the plan will be implemented only for just the very short term, at most "it's only going to be six weeks for the summer."
"This is not a decision we came to lightly but our first priority must be to our customers who have placed their faith in us to get them reliably and safely to the destinations of their choice," the management memo said.
To report problems or to leave feedback about this article, e-mail:
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Most Popular Slideshows
- Real Life ‘Frozen’: Snow Overwhelms The US, Kills 7; More To Come (Pictures)
- Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt in Sydney for ‘Unbroken’ Red Carpet Premiere [PHOTOS]
- ‘The Walking Dead’ Season 5, Episode 8 Spoilers: Daryl Dixon Is Set To Burn The Place Down in ‘Coda’
- G20 Summit Awkward Moments: Putin Yawns, Mystery Bubbles Appear, F18 Drama Ensues
Join the Conversation
- Air Canada Expands Vancouver Boeing 787 Dreamliners To Beijing, Seoul, Shanghai, Tokyo-Narita Routes
- Canada Consumer Alert: Tim Hortons Prices Of Coffee, Sandwiches To Go Up Effective Nov 26
- Doomsday Seed Vault Safeguards More Marijuana Seeds
- Travel Alert: Malaysia’s AirAsia Cuts Number Of Australian Flights
- Product Recall: Graco Recalls Baby Strollers in Canada, U.S. Due To Amputation Risks
- Walmart Early Price Matching Special Event On Nov. 21, 2014 Matches Its Competitors' Black Friday 2014 Prices And Includes Exclusive Deals For Samsung LED HDTVs And iPad Air 2 [WATCH VIDEO]
- US Plane Flying Over Russian Skies Spotted; Vladimir Putin Ready For 'Practical Cooperation' With US
- Alleged 'Microsoft Lumia 1030' Front Panel Leaked With Capacitive Buttons; 'Xbox One' Owners To Get Free Goodies On Anniversary
- Nexus 6 Release Date And Price Under AT&T, T-Mobile And Sprint Listed
- Walmart Pre-Black Friday 2014 Sale On Nov. 21, 2014 Includes Discounts On The 'NBA 2K15' For PS4 And The 'Skylanders Trap Team’ Starter Kit [WATCH VIDEO]
- Black Friday 2014 Sale: Top Deals On Game Consoles Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Wii U And More
- Cold War 2: Russia, China And North Korea’s Blacklisted Company Fortify Alliance -- Reports