Westjet Pilots Approve Strike Mandate
WestJet pilots have voted overwhelmingly to approve a strike, but the ALPA union stressed its goal is an agreement with the airline not industrial action.
The Air Line Pilots Association said the result of the vote, with 91 percent of pilots voting for job action, “demonstrates WestJet pilots’ resolve for a fair contract that addresses the large gaps in proposals on total compensation, working conditions, and job security.”
WestJet and the union are nearing the end of a 21-day cooling off period, with pilots able to start any job action from May 19. ALPA said it is committed to having no job action over the Victoria Day holiday, which this year is on May 21.
The Canadian airline acknowledged the outcome of the vote and the mandate pilots have given ALPA. WestJet chief executive Ed Sims said “We are certain our guests will appreciate that this update confirms their travel will be unaffected over the Victoria Day long weekend.”
Sims said the airline remains at the negotiation table to “drive a sustainable agreement.”
ALPA said pilots hope to avoid taking any lawful job action, and negotiations will restart next week.