Last week, WestJet president and CEO Ed Sims told WestJet Cabin Crew Members to “act like an owner” and embrace a quarter-billion dollar “cost-cutting initiative.”
Cabin Crew Members should be concerned about where these cuts will come from. The last major wave of cost-cutting at WestJet resulted in flying with fewer flight attendants on board. Instead of one flight attendant for every forty passengers on board, WestJet implemented one flight attendant per fifty passengers. CUPE has been standing up against this threat to passenger and crew safety in the courts ever since.
There are a few questions worth asking. Will the Executive Leadership Team be looking at cost reductions in:
- Excessive executive compensation? (See page 47)
- Resources spent on fighting ALPA in negotiations for WestJet pilots’ first fair contract?
- Money spent on repainting mainline planes with a coat of pink paint?
WestJetters know just how hard they work and how excellent they are at what they do. Employee compensation, benefits and job security must not be on the chopping block. WestJetters deserve better. WestJet needs to show some respect for the contributions of Cabin Crew Members behind the company’s success.
The best way for WestJetters to demand better and defend themselves against cost-cutting is to sign a card to join CUPE today.