PAL Aerospace

PAL Aerospace Pilots
A PAL Aerospace Campbell River Airborne Maritime Surveillance Division Dash 8 during sunset in British Columbia. Photo: Aaron Symes

At A Glance

Pilots joined ALPA: 2020

Number of pilots/flightcrew members: 62

Pilot bases: St. John’s, Nfld. and Labr.; Halifax, N.S.; Campbell River, B.C.; Curaçao; and the UK

Headquarters: St. John’s, Nfld. and Labr.

Operations: PAL Aerospace operates airborne maritime surveillance, managed jets and charters, and air ambulance and supports the Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard. In 2023, the company secured a new contract to provide airborne intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance support for the UK to address illegal migration and small-boat crossings.

Fleet: King Air BE20s, King Air B200s, King Air 350s, Beechcraft 1900s, de Havilland Dash 8-106s/-300s, and Gulfstream 6s

Stability, strategic planning, and focused negotiations were constant themes for the PAL Aerospace pilots in 2023.

The pilot group’s Master Executive Council leaders began the process of updating the pilots’ strategic plan early in 2023 to plot their course over the next year and identify how they’d achieve their goals, especially as negotiations continued.

By February, with updated pilot survey results, the pilot group’s Negotiating Committee worked to secure multiple tentative agreements and exchanged various contract proposals with the company.

As spring approached, the committee crafted the remaining contract proposals, which included building a salary and compensation structure that all the pilots could be happy with, regardless of their base or division with the varying operation.

While progress was made during the spring, that bargaining momentum slowed during the latter part of the year as management had little availability to meet.

The pilots have made clear their disappointment regarding management’s lack of urgency to finish negotiations for their first collective agreement. However, both sides are dedicated to reaching an agreement early this year.

A Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard Dash 8 takes off. Photo: Larry Every