The arbitrator also noted that although dental benefits, life and accident insurance, and pension provisions are not covered by the collective agreement, they were part of long-standing practices bound by the collective agreement. After decades of providing these services and accumulating retirement services for employees on WIP, Air Canada suddenly removed them as part of its attempt to erate the employee group. As a result, Air Canada had an obligation to notify CUPE of the termination of these benefits rather than do so immediately, the arbitrator said, adding that the notification had now been made and that it was up to Air Canada and CUPE to decide whether to negotiate this change. In addition, the agreements provide that 15% of the interest in the company will be spent in a trust for the benefit of union members, with the proceeds of the sale being allocated to the deficit of the pension plan. A seat on the Board of Directors is allocated for appointment by an agent representing Air Canada`s unions, while possession exceeds 2 per cent. In addition, with ACPA, the company obtained a tariff-neutral extension for a period of 21 months, following the lead of IAMAW, CAW Local 2002 and CALDA. The terms of the four unions` employment contract renewal agreements provide that there must be no change in rates of pay and pension benefits during the extension period. The contract renewal agreement and the agreement on the moratorium on pensions are subject to ratification by accession. Toronto (June 16, 20099) – After weeks of intense negotiations, Air Canada has reached preliminary agreements with its five unions for a 21-month moratorium on pension funding. An agreement was reached yesterday with the Air Canada Pilots Association (ACPA), which represents approximately 3200 pilots, and with the Union of Canadian Public Employees (CUPE), which represents approximately 6,700 flight attendants.
The union mourned the layoffs and said the dismissal of the group`s employees would result in the termination of their health benefits, which would go against the collective protection of employee benefits on LTD – union members could not be fired if the dismissal took away their contractual benefits, the union said. CUPE also argued that Air Canada failed to inform them during negotiations of its intention to change long-standing practices that allow workers with disabilities to continue to receive dental benefits, life and accident insurance, and to acquire services eligible for retirement. Air Canada had never before attempted to erd an employee who was receiving WIP benefits. The airline has now reached preliminary agreements on a moratorium on pension funding with all of its unionized staff in Canada, following a preliminary agreement with its three unions, Canadian Auto Workers (CAW), International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW) and the Canadian Association of Dispatcher Airlines (CALDA) on June 8, 2009. The pension agreements provide for a moratorium on past service contributions for a period of 21 months and firm payments of $150 million, $175 million and $225 million $US in 2011, 2012 and 2013. Routine benefits will continue to be performed normally and there will be no changes to defined benefit plans or reductions in benefits. . . .