CEP wins back job and full pay for pilot
An arbitrator has ruled that a Saskatoon-based airline must reinstate a wrongly fired pilot with full back pay and benefits after CEP took his case to a hearing.
Arbitrator Frank Moorgen ruled against West Wind Aviation’s assertion that pilot Mark Urlacher had resigned. “I conclude that the Complainant did not resign but that he had been unjustly dismissed by the Employer,” wrote Moorgen.
While the issues involving Mr. Urlacher occurred around the time of an organizing drive by CEP – which was eventually successful for the 70 pilots – at the time of the firing there was no contract in place. CEP fought Mr. Urlacher’s termination as being unjust under the Canada Labour Code.
The termination took place because Mr. Urlacher told his employer he was being interviewed for a job at West Jet Airlines. This is standard practice in the industry as pilots always need a reference from the employer. West Wind took that information as a resignation. Arbitrator Moorgen disagreed.
“Although the employer believed that Mr. Urlacher resigned his position, they were wrong in concluding that the information he provided them amounted to a resignation,” wrote Moorgen in his decision.
CEP represents 10,000 workers in Saskatchewan and tens of thousands of working people coast to coast in energy, paper, telecommunications, graphical, media and assorted industries.