International

CAL Pilots Take 57% Pay Cut to Save Jobs

T&T Airline Pilots Association (TTALPA) and Caribbean Airlines have agreed that all pilots’ salaries will be cut by 57 percent — just over half — for the next three months, to support CAL’s cost-cutting measures amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Trinidad Guardian reported Oct. 17.

TTALPA represents CAL’s estimated 149 pilots. The development halts CAL’s plan to start sending home some pilots on three months’ No-Pay Leave.

The pay cut will halve the salaries of all CAL’s pilots until January 2021. It will also affect other aspects of their pay up to June 2021, but they will keep their jobs.

TTTALPA had been negotiating with CAL in recent weeks on the issue. CAL received revised documents from TALPA last Friday. A Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) was signed by CAL Human Resources head Roger Berkley and TTALPA head Larry Imamshah.

“It’s a bittersweet situation,” said TTALPA’s industrial relations consultant Gerard Pinard. “It meant between a rock and hard place, but we’re making the sacrifices and reached an agreement.”

CAL communications manager Dionne Ligoure said discussions that had been ongoing were expected to be concluded shortly. Pilots were among the employees which CAL planned to send home temporarily due to effects from the pandemic which closed T&T’s borders. Up to June, the grounded airline lost $96 million.

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