Richmond, BC – IAM Canada continued with its campaign to create a national aerospace strategy. On consecutive days beginning February 20th, the IAM toured two aerospace plants where we represent workers to discuss the IAM Strategy document, “Grounded Potential’, with members and management of those companies.
Stan Pickthall, Ron Fontaine, Fred Hospes, Tania Canniff, and Steward Jim Mathieson met with over 300 IAM members in their MTU workplace to discuss the Grounded Potential document.
They also met with CEO Helmut Neuper and presented him a copy of the strategy document. MTU sees that the IAM position aligns well with the concerns that they have expressed in their meetings with the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada (AIAC).
General Vice-President Stan Pickthall, who has toured Canada speaking with members and management, said, “Our members were very pleased to receive the IAM Aerospace Strategy, and to hear of IAM plans to lobby in Ottawa near the end of the month.”
“More than 40% of the workers currently employed by Canadian Aerospace companies will be retiring in the next six years. More than 80,000 new workers will have to be trained and hired by 2025 in order to replace them and keep the industry vibrant. Young Canadians are not considering careers in the Aerospace industry because it is not being presented to them as an option. This is exactly why we need a national aerospace strategy,” said Pickthall.
Fred Hospes, President and Directing General Chair of IAM District 140, said, “These are high-skill, high-tech jobs. IAM members are amongst the most skilled workers in Canada, and we intend to keep them there!”
The IAM also toured Avcorp, an aircraft structures manufacturer. Tania Canniff, General Chairperson with IAM District 140 observed, “This is a program where our interests align closely with those of the employers. We want to secure training and jobs for our members, and the employers want to have a skilled workforce now and into the future,” she concluded.
The IAM represents close to 10,000 members working in the Canadian aerospace sector.