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Unifor pushing federal government to plan for safe reopening of borders

August 25, 2020 - 12:00 AM

August 25, 2020

TORONTO – Unifor continues to lobby the Federal Ministers of Health and Transportation to discuss a plan that eases travel restrictions while not comprising the health and safety of the travelling public.

“The air travel sector has arguably been hit the hardest because of the Pandemic and easing travel restrictions start by putting the health and safety of workers and passengers at the forefront,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President after speaking with federal officials yesterday. “Canadians are demanding all levels of government to start implementing measures that ease travel restrictions and provide funding to help the travel industry survive this unprecedented downturn.”

Unifor representatives outlined the need for government to establish clear criteria for opening borders to safe countries and corridors and reducing some quarantine requirements using science-based alternatives. The union believes that travelers arriving from countries and jurisdictions that have controlled the virus should not be subjected to the same protocols as countries where the virus is not contained.

“As the world is opening up, countries are coming to realize that blanket travel restrictions no longer make sense and in turn only hurt our economy, especially the travel and tourism sector,” said Barret Armann, President of Unifor Local 7378. “We need to recognize that if other countries are willing to accept Canadian travellers based on how we have controlled the virus we should do the same. The solution here is not simple but manageable and the government must act now.”

The union also highlighted its continued workwith many employers in the travel and tourism industry including hotels, airlines, and airports, to implement health and safety protocols that will increase the safety of workers and the travelling public.

To read Unifor’s “Air Transportation in Canada: Industry Preservation and Recovery” submission click here.

Information about the union’s response to the pandemic, as well as resources for members can be found at

For further information: For media inquiries or to arrange an interview with Jerry Dias via Skype or FaceTime, contact Hamid Osman, Unifor National Communications Representative at 647-448-2823 (cell) or