The Pilots’ contract which came into effect just before the holidays has caused some impact on the line directly impacting Flight Attendants. Following the advice of their own union, Pilots are completing their safety duties before “volunteering” to assist with grooming. WestJet has asked Flight Attendants to “write up” Pilots who do not “volunteer” for this work. The Pilots’ contract does not include language directing them to clean the aircraft on a complimentary basis.
Flight Attendants have made it very clear to the Local 4070 Executive that they will not accept being accountable for unpaid cleaning of the company fleet on an ongoing basis.
There have been little to no documented rules, contract/agreements or even informal documents by the company which identify who is responsible for, and when voluntary cleaning of the aircraft is to take place.
We will start bargaining for our own contract in March. If Pilots are pressured into doing unpaid grooming, it will make it much more difficult for us to take our position forward (that the work is outside our scope and should be compensated regardless).
By completing their safety duties first, our Pilots are helping us set the stage for our own battle on the issue.
We urge our Membership to rally together, Pilots and Cabin Crew, to ensure that the temporary setbacks we feel now, lead to success down the line.
In short, we are asking the following of you:
- Continue to groom as normal, until we can get the issue to the bargaining table. We cannot legally engage in job action at this time.
- Please do not “write up” Pilots. That adds pressure on the Pilots to give in, which will hurt our cause down the line.
- Try to work with Pilots and be united. Our interests are joined on this issue.
- Let CUPE stewards know if there are conflicts with Pilots that need to be resolved. We will discuss matters with ALPA and try to resolve them amicably.