Air Canada Bonus Rip Off

Toronto, Ontario

November 14, 2003


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Air Canada Bonus Rip Off
Air Canada Bonus Rip Off
dated November 14, 2003

Toronto, Ontario
November 12, 2003
       The news that a major investor has been found for bankruptcy protected Air Canada, has been damped by the retention bonuses to be paid to the two top company officials.
       After getting $650 million in concessions from the workers, the $21 million bonus to Robert Milton and Calin Rovinescu is very inappropriate according to Sari Sairanen , President of CAW Local 2002.

Sari Sairanen
Pres. CAW Local 2002

       "This is a company that is in bankruptcy, the workers had to dig deep into their pockets and give a lot to have a future with the company, with the airline and now the top executives are getting a bonus for being in bankruptcy protection. So there is a lot of anger over that."

       Sairanen points out that Hong Kong businessman Victor Li's investment only matches what the workers have already given.

Sari Sairanen
Pres. CAW Local 2002

       "All the unionized groups had to give 650 million. That's the same amount of money that Victor Li is injecting into the company, 650 million, he gets a 31.5 stake in Air Canada. What do the workers get? We can't even get the company to legitimately deal with us on the pension issue"

       The unions have been fighting to protect its members' pensions and to date the company has stonewalled the issue while they looked for an equity investor. Sairanen says it's time to deal with the worker's demands for pension security, vacation and scheduling issues.

Sari Sairanen
Pres. CAW Local 2002

       "Mr. Li is on board, they have an investor. Now it is time to come back to business, look after the customers and in turn look after the employees who look after your customers. They are the first front line contact that the public has and they should be treated well because there is a link between the customers and the work force."

       While angry about the bonuses and frustrated by the lack of action on the workers' issues, Sairanen says the fact that a successful billionaire businessman like Victor Li is willing to invest in Air Canada is however encouraging and the CAW is continuing to push for pension protection.

CAW "Fighting Back Makes a Difference."


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