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MONTREAL – Air Canada flight attendants have shared a ‘base closure viability study’ with the employer today that undermines the company’s claims the attendant bases are being closed to cut costs.

The company announced in June that attendant bases in Halifax and Winnipeg would be closed by November 1st.

According to Lesley Swann, president of the CUPE Air Canada Component representing the flight attendants, “We did our homework and we can show that there is no business case or economic justification for the closure of the bases, unless of course the airline has another motive they are not sharing with us or the public.”

The airline claims that the closure of the Halifax and Winnipeg bases is supported by the results of a “base viability study”. Air Canada did not request any union or flight attendant input for this “study” and has refused to make the results public.

The union representing the flight attendants, the Canadian Union of Public Employees did its own study of the flight configurations and the costs of closing the bases in Halifax and Winnipeg. Its conclusion is that to maintain current flight schedules, it will cost Air Canada about $2 million a year if it closes the two bases. Without flight attendants located in these two regional centres, Air Canada will pay more for over night accommodations and in transporting flight attendants to their assignments.

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Contacts: Lesley Swann, President Air Canada Component CUPE – 416-809-2577; Daniela Scarpelli, CUPE National Representative – 416-458-0588; Dennis Lewycky, CUPE Communications – 204-333-5065 :cope491