EUpgrades or VIP treatment?

Discussion in 'Air Canada | Aeroplan' started by global_happy_traveller, Oct 12, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. global_happy_traveller
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    global_happy_traveller Silver Member

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    As she is making headlines for stepping in and helping to squash a possible strike by Air Canada flight attendants, Labour Minister Lisa Raitt finds herself in a possible conflict of interest

    CityNews has uncovered an internal Air Canada document apparently showing a confirmed upgrade to business class for Raitt, authorized by the airlines Chief Operating Officer Duncan Dee.

    Dee is also responsible for Air Canada’s government relations.

    The name of Air Canada's COO appeared on Raitt's passenger record for a September 25 Toronto Ottawa flight. On September 19, Raitt announced a notice had been filed that back to work legislation would be introduced to end a strike by Air Canada's Flight attendants.

    Raitt denies any allegations of special treatment.

    “When I use upgrades I utilize my own, my electronic upgrades. I don’t know what that’s about…My instruction to staff is to utilize whatever upgrades I have. I travel a lot, I have a lot of electronic upgrades and that’s the stuff that we use so I actually don’t know what that is at all,” said Raitt.

    “I don’t know what Duncan’s authorizing, because if I used an upgrade, I used an upgrade that was mine. And in terms of the information, I’ve not seen that before. That looks to be some documentation from Air Canada,” said Raitt.

    Air Canada told CityNews they don’t comment on individual customers. When asked why Dee’s name appears on Raitt’s document, airline spokesperson Peter Fitzpatrick said “His office upgrades lots of people.”

    Political insiders say this situation appears suspect.

    “At a minimum, this is the mother of all apparent conflicts of interest,” said John McCallum, Liberal MP for Markham-Union.

    “I don’t want to pre-judge it, but it looks smelly. You don’t have to be a genius to figure out this looks a bit smelly.”

    McCallum, a former cabinet minister, said getting an upgrade from the airline would be “unheard of.”

    McCallum told CityNews MP’s are allowed to purchase a business class ticket if the flight is longer than two hours. The flight from Toronto to Ottawa is less than an hour.

    The union representing Air Canada’s flight attendants didn’t want to comment for this story.

    With files from CityNews reporter Francis D’Souza
    NYBanker likes this.
  2. mevlannen
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    mevlannen Silver Member

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    Darn! If I'd but had the wit to enter politics, perhaps by now there'd be a brass plaque at Seat 1A with my name on it. Oh, wait, there is....
  3. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    "McCallum, a former cabinet minister, said getting an upgrade from the airline would be “unheard of.” " huh?
  4. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    Read this before leaving the country. More relevant to me is the breach of privacy if indeed her upgrade account was released to the media by an AC employee. However, if Duncan upgrades a lot of people, perhaps we can get onto his list...
    YULtide and canucklehead like this.
  5. canucklehead
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    canucklehead Gold Member

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    Yes, seems these Air Canada internal documents have a way of getting into media hands....
    YULtide likes this.

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