The COVID-19 pandemic has caused Canada’s largest airline to temporarily lay off 16,500 workers.
Air Canada announced that they will be placing 15,200 of its unionized members on “off-duty” status and furloughing roughly 1,300 managers, beginning April 3.
The airline also said its president and chief executive officer, and its chief financial officer, have agreed to forgo 100 per cent of their salary, while senior executives will see forgo 25 to 50 per cent of their salaries.
The board of directors have agreed to a 25 per cent pay cut and other managers with the airline will see their salaries slashed by 10 per cent for the entire second quarter.
“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. It will help ensure that Air Canada can manage through this crisis that is affecting airlines everywhere,” Calin Rovinescu, the airline’s president and chief executive officer, said in a press release.
Additionally, the airline is planning to implement a company-wide cost reduction and capital deferral program of at least $500 million and drawing down its operating lines of credit by roughly $1 billion in order to increase liquidity.