Air Canada will temporarily lay off 16,500 employees starting this week as the airline struggles with fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. Effective Friday, the layoffs of 15,200 unionized workers and 1,300 managers will last through April and May amid drastically reduced flight capacity.
Air Canada said its cost reduction scheme aims to save least $500 million and it includes a pledge from both the CEO and chief financial officer Mike Rousseau to forego 100 percent of their salaries, while the rest of the executive team will give up between 25 percent and 50 percent.
“To furlough such a large proportion of our employees is an extremely painful decision but one we are required to take given our dramatically smaller operations for the next while,” chief executive Calin Rovinescu said in a statement.
The carrier has halted most of its international and US routes in response to the global shutdown.
Countries from Sweden to China to the United States have rolled out aid packages for the airline sector over the past month as borders closed and travel demand plummeted amid the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Source: Travel Industry Today
MASSIVE LAYOFFS AT AIR CANADA: CEO and CFO forego salaries