Release #: WEN 24.04
April 02, 2024

WestJet Encore Pilots Vote to Authorize Strike

Vote Result Comes One Week after Conciliation Ends

CALGARY, AB.—One week into the 21-day cooling off period, WestJet Encore pilots, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA), sent a clear message to WestJet management. Of the 89 percent of pilots who took part in a strike-authorization vote, 97 percent voted in favour of a strike, if required.

WestJet Encore pilots are unified in their efforts to secure a contract that will bring stability to their careers and the airline. However, should the pilots and WestJet management fail to negotiate a new collective agreement by April 17, 2024, a strike or lockout could disrupt passenger services. 

“Our industry and our company reputation are built on trust and stability,” said Capt. Carin Kenny, chair of the WestJet Encore ALPA Master Executive Council. “That’s why our tactic at the negotiating table has been to make commonsense proposals that will provide a path forward for the WestJet Group and its pilots.”

During the past seven months of negotiating, progress was made in the early stages. However, momentum came to a near standstill once talks shifted to larger, more significant sections of the contract, including pay and career progression within the WestJet Group. 

Currently, WestJet Encore pilots are some of the lowest-paid regional pilots in Canada. That’s why their proposals to management have been commonsense solutions to bring the stability and career progression they are sorely lacking right now.

“Without drastic improvement on our next contract, there will be little stopping WestJet Encore pilots from continuing to seek better employment opportunities elsewhere. That’s why we are looking for an industry-standard contract comparable to some of our regional colleagues across Canada,” Capt. Kenny continued. “We are here to fight for a contract that will once again make working within the WestJet Group a career goal. Unfortunately, despite management’s platitudes, our proposals continue to fall on deaf ears.”

Flight disruptions are never an ideal outcome for any pilot or their passengers, and ALPA remains committed to the bargaining process, making the union’s negotiators available 24/7 during the remainder of the 21-day cooling-off period.

Should management continue to stall negotiations, the WestJet Encore pilots are prepared to file a 72-hour strike notice on April 14, with the possibility of being in a legal strike position on April 17.

Founded in 1931, ALPA is the largest airline pilot union in the world and represents more than 77,000 pilots at 42 U.S. and Canadian airlines. Visit or follow us on Twitter @ALPAPilots.


CONTACT: ALPA Media, 703-481-4440 or