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The union representing Air Transat’s flight attendants has learned that 183 of its 343 members laid off in October and November will be recalled on December 1, while the remaining 160 flight attendants will be recalled on January 1. In addition to this good news, Air Transat will be hiring about 110 new flight attendants who will start training in January 2011 in order to be ready to work February 1.

Air Transat had announced in September that the temporary layoffs would be canceled over a recall period extending from mid-December to mid-May. In the end, 161 Air Transat flight attendants were laid off in Montréal in October and November, and 126 of them will be recalled on December 1. In Toronto, there were 126 layoffs and 27 recalls and in Vancouver, 56 layoffs and 30 recalls.

“We are very pleased with this good news: clearly, our employer is doing better than expected. This bodes well for the next step in the negotiations to renew our collective agreement, which started on September 17 and has been going smoothly,” said Nathalie Stringer, president of the CUPE’s Air Transat Component.

Air Transat’s 1,400 flight attendants - mostly women - are based in three locations: Montréal, Toronto, and Vancouver. Three local unions represent them: CUPE 4041 (650 members in Montréal-YUL), CUPE 4047 (550 in Toronto-YYZ), and CUPE 4078 (200 in Vancouver-YVR). The Air Transat Component oversees all three local unions.

In total, CUPE represents nearly 9,500 members in the airline industry, including at Air Canada, Calm Air, Canadian North, CanJet, First Air and Cathay Pacific.