Canada's NDP


February 5th, 2024

NDP Disability and Inclusion critic takes on Air Canada CEO on poor treatment of air passengers


February 5, 2024

OTTAWA – On Monday, NDP Disability and Inclusion Critic Bonita Zarrillo will grill the Air Canada CEO for the company's mistreatment of air passengers who are living with a disability.

Following multiple instances of gross mistreatment of travellers by Air Canada, including a man being forced to drag himself off of a plane because the airline didn't have a wheelchair for him, Zarrillo moved a motion that summoned Air Canada's CEO to testify at a committee.

"Over the past few months, we've all heard and seen the disturbing mistreatment of air passengers who have a disability – whether not being given a wheelchair or having to drag themselves off planes. It's completely unacceptable and cruel," said Zarrillo. "What we're seeing here is a horrible corporate culture that has festered under the Liberals, where CEOs who make tens of millions of dollars have no obligation to treat people fairly."

In 2022, the CEO of Air Canada's salary tripled, earning $12.3 million annually. This is 364 times more than the average person who has a disability earns.

At the same time, consecutive Liberal and Conservative governments have continued to fund and bail out Air Canada and other airlines with public money - without setting any expectations or guidelines. The government even agreed to loan Air Canada $5.9 billion during the pandemic.