MONTREAL – Security screening officers at airports across Quebec have ratified two-year collective agreements that include 12.5% wage increases retroactive to March 2022. For the first time, the security screeners from the Dorval and Quebec City airports and 12 regional airports negotiated as a united front.
The security screeners are members of the Syndicat des Métallos/United Steelworkers (USW) union.
“Quebec’s airport security screeners now have the best conditions in Canada. Negotiations were long and difficult, but we’re happy with the results,” said Marc Bourget, president of USW Local 9554, which represents the 987 security screeners at Montreal’s Dorval airport.
“We’re proud that we negotiated as a united front and stood together to the end – this helped lift everyone up. Negotiations will resume in less than a year, so before you know it, the process will start up all over again so that we can ensure we keep up with inflation,” Bourget said.
The wage enhancements negotiated in the new contracts also apply retroactively to all forms of compensation, including overtime, holiday and vacation pay, and pensions. Screeners at the Montreal airport also negotiated a new night premium.
The new contracts also provide an increase in personal floater leaves, some of which are paid. In addition, the employer’s contribution to the benefits plan has increased. Signing bonuses of $1,200 will be paid to full-time workers and $600 to part-time workers.
In accordance with new federal legislation, 10 paid sick days are now included in the screeners’ contracts. Provisions in those agreements allow workers to take their 10 sick days at the start of the year, while up to eight days can be paid at the end of the year if they are not used.
“This is clearly the best contract negotiated to date at regional airports. The united front we brought to the bargaining table was a good thing for the regions,” said Mario Boulianne, president of the USW Local 1976 bargaining unit representing security screeners at Quebec’s regional airports.
The new contracts provide a 50-cent-per-hour premium for workers at regional airports where shifts have been cut, while allowances for air travel for those who work at remote airports are being increased.
At the Quebec City airport, the new contract for 170 security screeners provides increased vacation time, and introduces a status for student workers to facilitate work-study balance. A reclassification committee has been set up for workers with functional limitations. Security screening officers certified to operate certain types of equipment will be entitled to a bonus.
“We’re happy with the outcome of the negotiations and are already preparing for the next round, which will begin in less than a year,” said Sébastien Boilard, president of the USW Local 1976 bargaining unit that represents screeners at the Quebec City airport.
Affiliated with the Fédération des travailleurs et travailleuses du Québec (FTQ), the Syndicat des Métallos/United Steelworkers is the largest private-sector union in Quebec, representing more than 60,000 workers in all sectors of the economy.
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