On May 11, 2020 Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced a new loan program for large employer including those in the air industry. Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility (LEEFF) will allow big companies to access additional liquidity to keep their operations going, retain workers on payroll, and avoid bankruptcy

Designed for organization which have “significant operations or workforce in Canada”, this new financial program comes with very clear terms and conditions including:

  • employers to respect collective agreements;
  • employers to respect pensions; and
  • limits on executive compensation

The fund is not available to any organization that does not need it or for restructuring purposes.

With this program and the Canadian Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS), our employers are in the healthiest position possible to support our members, their employees. Keeping people working should be at the forefront of their goals during this pandemic.

We celebrate that the federal government is taking a balanced approach by working with both industry and labour to problem solve labour’s issues and industry’s needs.

To date, UCTE has been working diligently through the established collective agreement protocols to try to minimize the impact of COVID-19 on our members. Unfortunately, we have noticed that various employers are taking advantage of this moment to restructure their businesses on the backs of our members.

UCTE’s position remains that at minimum an employer must use the CEWS to subsidize employees when needed and must follow the collective agreements that have been fairly negotiated in order to be eligible for these loans. The union has no problem blowing the whistle on any employer who abuses these programs designed to help workers and their families.