ontario news watch

WestJet union should apologize for trying to ‘silence’ free speech, Poilievre says

VANCOUVER — Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre says the union representing WestJet cabin crew should apologize for trying to silence free speech.

Poilievre used the public announcement system to give a 45-second speech on Sunday night on board a WestJet plane that was headed to Calgary from Quebec City after the Conservative party convention.

After video of the speech circulated online, CUPE Alberta’s local 4070 president said it was disappointing the airline allowed a politician to use the PA system and that cabin crew had no input in the decision. 

The union wanted WestJet and Poilievre to apologize for putting the cabin crew in that situation. 

Speaking in Vancouver today, Poilievre says he was asked multiple times by the cabin crew to speak and the union should be the one apologizing. 

WestJet’s CEO said Wednesday that the flight was specifically added to the schedule because of extra demand related to the convention and that most of the passengers were Conservative delegates.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 14, 2023. 

The Canadian Press