Las Vegas, NV – Since 2006, Carlos DaCosta, as IAM Canada’s Airline Coordinator, has delivered many reports to the IAM Transportation Conferences all over North America. On Wednesday April 10th, he gave his last, announcing his retirement this summer. He has been an IAM member for 45 years, first as an Air Canada aviation mechanic, then as a General Chairperson of IAM Transportation District Lodge 140 and for the last 13 years as Canadian Airline Coordinator.
In his address to more than 800 IAM delegates, DaCosta touched on the growth of aviation worldwide and the changes that are coming that will eventually impact on our members. “Our airport security screeners face challenges in their workplace due to technological change,” he told delegates. “On the airport tarmacs you will see driverless tractors driving around towing baggage carts and pushing back aircraft, inside the hangar exterior aircraft inspections will be conducted using drones, engine inspections will be conducted by microbots. What used to take several man hours will be reduced significantly and we have to be prepared for that.”
One of the key issues moving forward for the air transport sector is how to meet this technological change. “Most of our collective agreements contain articles regarding job protection due to technological change but in most instances they were written in the late 1960’s and 70’s and are sadly out of date,” he explained. “The changes are coming quickly and they will pose a big challenge to our negotiators. There is a current skills shortage and with this new technology new jobs will evolve and in Canada, employers and governments will have to invest in new technology and training if we hope to keep pace globally.”