The attack on the aviation industry from government-mandated COVID-19 restrictions continues. Early in 2021, airlines such as Air Canada took billion dollar government bailouts after record losses in 2020 and 2021.
Air Canada lost $3.6 billion in 2021, an improvement from a $4.6 billion dollar loss in 2020. Their revenue from domestic flights is down 61%, while international flying is down 80% from 2019 baselines.
At the start of 2022, the aviation industry warned of staff shortages (allegedly due to illness and isolation rules) while healthy, unvaccinated employees remained on forced unemployment despite being ready and able to work.
One of those unvaccinated employees is Greg Hill.
Greg is a Canadian airline pilot and a military veteran who is co-founder and Director of Free2Fly, an initiative started by aviation professionals to stand alongside passengers in defence of freedom to travel and bodily autonomy.
We discussed how the the last year or so has looked for him as he remains on unpaid leave. On March 9, 2022, Greg and his principled colleagues were served formal termination notices by Air Canada. They were given a final deadline of May 1 to comply with the mandatory COVID-19 vaccine policy or be terminated. The Air Canada Component of CUPE is grieving on behalf of the members faced with this harrowing decision.
Noting the odd timing and referencing the hyper focus on safety and convenience, Greg found it strange that a partnership announced between Air Canada and a World Economic Forum (WEF) sponsored initiative surfaced within 24 hours of him receiving the termination notice.
While vaccine passports have normalized the scanning of QR codes to gain access to places, the Known Digital Traveller Identity (KDTI) aims to develop a Known Traveller Status by tying in “attestations from your university, your bank statements or vaccination status.”
This is the future that Greg is opposing and he believes the vaccine mandates and the subsequent passports are the precursor to.