Steelworkers Score Major Victory For Airport Screeners

Steelworkers Score Major Victory For Airport Screeners

Steelworkers who work as airport screeners at Abbotsford, Kamloops and Whitehorse airports continue to be on the job during COVID-19, and thanks to the efforts of the USW Local 2009, they are now doing so with the appropriate personal protective equipment.

In a major victory, Transport Canada responded to a complaint and continual advocacy from the local, by ordering that all airport screeners across the entire country be provided with PPE, and further issued an order requiring all passengers to wear face masks as well.

It’s a decision that also benefits District 3 Steelworkers, employed as airport screeners by Garda at Yellowknife and Thompson airport, as well as Steelworker airport screeners in other districts.

“This is the type of difference having a union makes. This is how the United Steelworkers go to bat for their members,” says District 3 Director Steve Hunt. “I want to congratulate these Steelworkers and Local 2009 for their determination to ensure that the health and safety of everyone was protected.”

“We are proud to represent workers who are now referred to as essential. But essential doesn’t mean they are sacrificial. We didn’t hesitate to fight for the health and safety of our members and will continue to do whatever it takes to force employers and regulators to prioritize the health and safety of the people doing the work ,” says Al Bieksa, President of USW Local 2009.

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, the USW has been adapting and responding to provide support to all Steelworkers, including those who are continuing to work and those who’ve suffered employment loss as a result of the virus.

“Our union has faced tough times in the past and we always come back stronger because of our solidarity. That’s what it means to be a member of this union and that is what will get us through this together,” says Hunt.

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