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WestJet and pilots reach four-year deal
Canada NewsWire

Eighty-nine per cent vote in favour, 91 per cent turnout

CALGARY, June 17 /CNW/ - WestJet and the WestJet Pilots Association (WJPA) today announced the ratification of the 2009 Pilot Agreement effective July 1, 2009. With 91 per cent of eligible pilots voting, 89 per cent have voted in favour of the new agreement.

WestJet Pilots Association Chair Dave DeVeaux said, "We are very pleased with this new agreement and the overwhelmingly positive response from our pilots. We are being provided with fair and market-driven pay scales over the term of the agreement. Our pilots continue to be equity stakeholders in our airline and now have been given the ability to choose within their share ownership which has been very well received as evidenced in the vote results."

Sean Durfy, WestJet President and Chief Executive Officer commented, "This announcement today demonstrates the power of open and collaborative bargaining. We have spent many nights at town hall meetings with our pilots discussing this agreement and developing an understanding of our mutual needs. It was through this process that we gained the common ground that will benefit WestJet and our guests as we continue our strategic march towards becoming a top five international airline by 2016. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the WJPA Executive for their engagement and efforts."

Dave DeVeaux continued, "The WJPA believes that this four year agreement will provide both the pilot group and WestJet with the stability required to overcome the challenging economic times we currently face and allow our airline to continue growing strongly when the industry recovers. Ultimately our pilots want to be the most efficient in the world and this agreement will help to achieve this."

About WestJet

WestJet is Canada's preferred airline, providing high-value low-cost service throughout its 55-city North American and Caribbean network. Named one of Canada's most admired corporate cultures in 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008, WestJet pioneered low-cost flying in Canada. WestJet offers increased legroom, leather seats and live seatback television provided by Bell TV on its modern fleet of 79 Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft. With future confirmed deliveries for an additional 42 aircraft, bringing its fleet to 121 by 2013, WestJet strives to be the number one choice for travellers.