28 June, 2022
Toronto, ON – IAM Airport Screening Officers working at airports in Toronto, Vancouver and other airports in British Columbia rallied for dignity, justice and better working conditions. Other unions, including the United Steelworkers who also represent Screening Officers, as well as labour councils, federations of labour and the Canadian Labour Congress, supported the rallies.
Screening Officers, tired of low pay, long working hours under strict conditions, and the recent monetary bonus offer, finally had enough and organised the rallies.
Dave Flowers, National President and Directing General Chair, who attended the Toronto rally, said, “This has gone on for too long. Screening Officers have been patient because they care about the travelling public. But they’ve had enough. All of those factors, and now the so-called bonus, only encourages workers to come in sick.”
The bonus, which is only given if workers have a 100% attendance record, obliges Screening Officers to come in no matter what. They are not allowed to take vacation, attend funerals or other special life events. If they are sick, they would lose the bonus.
IAM Canadian General Vice-President David Chartrand attended the rally at the Vancouver Airport. He was joined by close to 100 Screening Officers, as well activists from other unions and labour umbrella groups.
Chartrand thanks other IAM locals and friends and allies who came out to support the BC screeners. He thanked the screeners for their difficult work during the pandemic despite losing purchasing power while dealing with many challenges at Canadian airports. He criticised the bonus offered to screeners. “Temporary measures don’t fix the problem. Those incentives should be made permanent so that Screeners can have a decent wage. I’m holding CATSA and the third-party contractors accountable to raise wages and create a better working environment for workers.”