YYZ Layoffs Point To Urgent Need For Gov’t Support Of Aviation Sector, Says Unifor

Anna Kroupina, Open Jaw

Widespread layoffs at YYZ point to an urgent requirement for the Government of Canada to safeguard  the future of the aviation industry, says the Unifor union. 

"Canada's airlines and airports are being left behind," said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President.

"Minister Garneau agreed with us at our 11JUL meeting that the sector is among the hardest hit, and likely will be among the last to recover, but we still don't see any movement to protect the industry's future."

Yesterday, the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA), responsible for managing YYZ, announced they would be eliminating approximately 500 jobs due to a dramatic decrease in global air traffic caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting economic contraction. This represents a workforce reduction of 27% compared to pre-pandemic levels.

The union says the layoffs announced include 236 Unifor members working in terminal operations and administration.

According to Unifor, among countries representing the top 20 airlines, Canada is the only nation without an aviation-specific aid package. At a meeting on 11JUL, 2020, Unifor presented federal Transportation Minister Marc Garneau with a policy paper containing several recommendations to preserve and support the industry where travel restrictions remain in place, and to lift travel restrictions where it is safe to do so. 

"The aviation industry needs a government-led plan to weather the downturn. Government's failure to plan is failing the whole aviation sector," said Dias.

Anna Kroupina

Anna Kroupina Journalist

Anna is OJ's newest member and she joins the team as a writer/reporter. She co-writes the daily news and covers events. Although she's new to the industry, pursuing a career path in travel/tourism has been a goal since her first family road trip to the Florida Keys sparked a desire to discover the world and this exhilarating, fast-paced industry.

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