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Letter to WestJet re: AMFA’s Opposition to Proposed Integration of Sunwing Aviation Maintenance Engineers
Mar 12, 2024

March 12, 2024

VIA ELECTRONIC MAIL:  virginia.swindall@westjet.com

Virginia Swindall
Senior Manager – Labour Relations

Re: AMFA’s Opposition to Proposed Integration of Sunwing Aviation Maintenance Engineers

Dear Ms. Swindall:

In response to WestJet’s inquiry, this letter will serve to advise you of AMFA’s intention to oppose any action before the Canada Industrial Relations Board (CIRB) to integrate the WestJet and Sunwing bargaining units performing aviation maintenance work, including Aircraft Maintenance Engineers (AMEs).

As you have acknowledged, disputes relating to the scope of the AME bargaining unit at WestJet have produced legal conflicts and disruptions in maintenance operations.

Currently, the parties are embroiled in federal court litigation in which WestJet is challenging the very status of AMFA as the trade union certified to represent the AME and related employees of the airline. 

The parties are also litigating before the CIRB the legality of WestJet’s elimination of Aircraft Maintenance Lead (AML) and Inspector Crew Lead (ICL) positions – positions that WestJet agreed should be within the bargaining unit – by transferring their work to a newly created Operations Manager (OM) position.  WestJet has proposed the complete elimination of the AML and ICL positions, which AMFA considers to be both unlawful and a strike issue.

The integration of two bargaining units from two distinct carriers is inherently complex and potentially disruptive.  However, when the scope and even legal existence of one of the two units is being actively challenged, no useful purpose can be served in attempting such an integration.

AMFA’s position before the CIRB will be that any integration of WestJet and Sunwing units must be deferred until the existing federal court and CIRB litigation are both resolved.


Bret Oestreich
National President


7853 E. Arapahoe Court, Suite 1100
Centennial, CO 80112

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