September 11th, 2019

NDP Worried about Liberals Secretive Plans to Privatize Airport Security Screening

BRAMPTON – Today, the NDP is calling on Justin Trudeau’s Liberals to stop the privatization of Canadian Airport Transportation Security Authority (CATSA) behind closed doors and without worker representatives. Workers’ knowledge and years of experience absolutely need to be taken into account before government makes major modifications.

“This government has chosen to ignore stakeholders and instead rely on the biased opinions of those they hire to justify privatization. This consultation process has not been open or transparent. It is shameful that workers and their representatives have not been included at all stages of this transition. The knowledge and expertise CATSA workers and their representatives have is crucial to protecting public interest and public money,” said NDP candidate Saranjit Singh (Brampton East).

Not only would privatization result in higher ticket prices and erode safety standards, it would also have major impacts on workers. The Liberals show a complete lack of understanding about the effects these changes will have for workers and the traveling public.

“Trudeau needs to give assurance that privatization of services will not impact the cost of travel for Canadians as well of the quality of security services,” said Stan Pickthall, General Vice-President of IAMAW. “Time and time again, we have seen Trudeau favouring the interests of big businesses and trading them for the interests of ordinary Canadians. The Liberals are working in coordination with Scheer’s Conservatives to ensure worker’s input is bypassed. Let’s make sure this will not happen again.”

The NDP believes that CATSA’s funding model should be reviewed to make it stable and predictable to ensure that international standards are met. A New Democrat government commits to review the Liberals’ decision and make sure to put the interest of workers and Canadians first.

– 30 –

Facts:

  • From January to July, 2019, 29.4 million passengers passed through Canada’s busiest hub, Toronto Pearson International Airport, an increase from last year.
  • A boom in the airlines industry will bring more passengers at every Canadian airport, which requires not just efficiency but also meeting strict safety standards that protect the traveling public.
  • During the budgetary process, New Democrats tried to stop the privatization of CATSA to avoid costs being passed on to the public, erosion of safety and working conditions of airport workers.
  • Liberals at the Finance Committee and the Transport Committee have continuously refused our amendments and recommendations to remove this section of the Budget bill.