COPE asks the public to cancel their
flights with Porter and boycott the airline until they come to the
table and bargain a living wage for its workers.

The employees who fuel Porter aircraft at the
Toronto Island airport are on strike as of January 9th, 2013.

The workers are members of Local 343 of the Canadian Office and
Professional Employees Union (COPE).

Porter, after asking for a one day extension on the strike
deadline, has not moved on their position of an increase of 25
cents per hour for employees without a DZ licence (11 employees out
of 22 in the bargaining unit). The others would get no increase.
These employees are the lowest paid in the industry. The average
annual income of the striking workers is $28,000.

The workers are concerned that the replacement workers being hired
by Porter will not have the skills necessary to ensure the safety
of the flying public. Training for new employees generally takes
one month to obtain all the certification required to do the job.
Training of replacement workers started after January 2.

COPE members working at Porter not only fuel aircraft but they
“farm” fuel for the facility as well. This means they collect fuel
from the provider and store and transport fuel in large tankards to
aircraft as needed.

A mishap involving fuel could have dire consequences for workers as
well as for Porter passengers.

Based on these reports, the Union is concerned for the safety of
the flying public.

The Union will address these concerns with the Honourable Lisa
Raitt, the federal Minister of Labour as well as the federal
Minister of Transportation.

Send your message of support to COPE Ontario, to the attention of
Mary Stalteri.