AC ready to talk, disputes union claims

Air Canada said “it remains at the negotiating table awaiting a response from ACPA to a comprehensive proposal tabled by the company on Monday, January 16, 2012. ” In a statement, Air Canada said it has been in negotiations with ACPA since October 2010 and following the rejection of a first tentative agreement reached in May 2011, the company waited six months for ACPA to return to the negotiating table. The two sides have now been in discussions assisted by a federally-appointed conciliator since early November 2011. The carrier noted that following two separate extensions to the conciliation time-line, the negotiation process is advancing to mediation, as permitted by the Canada Labour Code. In this phase, the conciliator will assume the role of mediator and will continue to oversee the process to bring to conclusion the talks started in late 2010. However, Air Canada challenged recent comments by the union, saying: “Contrary to certain allegations by union representatives, Air Canada is not abandoning its efforts to negotiate a new contract with its pilots. Indeed, Air Canada remains at the table awaiting a response to its most recent offer.” The airline continued: “In light of two separate recent extensions to the conciliation period, it is also inaccurate to say that Air Canada has refused requests to extend conciliation time-lines.” And Air Canada added:”in view of the time elapsed since the start of negotiations towards a new collective agreement, the company is of the view that the 21-day mediation period provides ample time to the parties to reach agreement.” Go to for more.