A Quebec Court of Appeal recently made a big ruling in the Air Canada labour case, stating that the airline must keep the maintenance work in Manitoba, Quebec and Ontario. Greg Selinger, Manitoba’s Premier, said that he and his staff were happy with the ruling.
The issue was with the laying off of unionized workers. Over 2,400 of them lost their jobs back in 2012. This happened when a subcontractor for Air Canada, known as Aveos Fleet Performance Inc., was forced to close its doors. The workers were employed at various airframe maintenance centres, including one in Winnipeg that lost 400 workers.
Back in 2013, in the wake of the layoffs, a lower court determined that this was a breach of the Air Canada Public Participation Act. The government in Quebec started a lawsuit against the company due to this breach. According to the Premier, Manitoba’s government has backed Quebec since the whole thing began.
The case ended up in appeals, but the Court of Appeal recently determined that the lower court had made the proper ruling.
The Air Canada Public Participation Act was passed by the federal government back in 1988, when Air Canada was privatized. It states that the heavy maintenance centres have to be in Montreal, Winnipeg and Mississauga, Ontario.
Selinger made a statement about the case, stressing the way that these lost jobs could have a huge impact on people in the industry and noting that this impact was to the families of those holding maintenance jobs, and not just to the workers themselves.
When facing lawsuits from the federal government, it is crucial for business owners to know their legal options.
Source: CBC News, “Manitoba applauds Quebec court ruling in Air Canada labour case,” Nov. 09, 2015