Viking Air workers could strike on Thursday

Local branch of Canadian Autoworkers Union serves strike notice as negotiations stall

Strike deadline is noon Thursday for workers at Viking Air. Many staff at the aircraft manufacturer are members of the Canadian Autoworkers Union which issued 72 hour strike notice Monday.

“The skilled workers at Viking Air have been patiently waiting for well over a year for a new contract that addresses wages, benefits and job security issues,” said Gavin McGarrigle, CAW national representative. “The union reached a new contract with Cascade Aerospace in Abbotsford last year without any disruption and that pattern should work for Viking Air as well.”

The workers at Viking Air voted 94 per cent in favour of strike action last October.

“We’re going to work hard in bargaining this week to reach a fair deal as a strike at Viking Air will completely disrupt production and further delay deliveries of many new Twin Otter aircraft that are already behind schedule,” said McGarrigle.

The current collective agreement expired on Oct. 31, 2010.

CAW Local 114 represents 270 workers at Viking Air including aircraft mechanics, machinists, sheet metal mechanics, painters, welders, stores persons and labourers.