June 27, 2011 / 7:28 PM / 6 years ago

Air Canada service, sales staff ratify labor pact

TORONTO (Reuters) - Air Canada’s nearly 4,000 customer service and sales staff voted 87.7 per cent in favor of a new collective agreement after resolving many of the issues that had led them to strike earlier in the month, the union said on Monday.

<p>An Air Canada plane prepares for take-off at Montreal's Dorval Airport, April 1, 2003.REUTERS/Christinne Muschi</p>

The agreement gives workers wage increases of 9 percent over four years, re-establishes 30-minute paid lunch breaks, and secures work at the company’s low-cost airline, the Canadian Auto Workers union said.

Key elements of the pension plan, which was the biggest obstacle to the deal, remain in place, though the issue of pension benefits for new hires will be sent to mediation and then to arbitration if it is not resolved.

Reporting by John McCrank; editing by Rob Wilson

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