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Flair Airlines rehires all laid-off employees and restores wages following federal subsidy

The tail section of a Flair Airlines plane is seen in this undated handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Flair Airlines *MANDATORY CREDIT*.
The tail section of a Flair Airlines plane is seen in this undated handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Flair Airlines *MANDATORY CREDIT*.

Flair Airlines has made the move to rehire all the employees it previously laid off, restoring it to a “pre-pandemic” level, after the company was assisted by the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy.

All 130 employees that were previously laid off due to the COVID-19 crisis by the airline have been rehired, and all salaries of employees who had faced reductions have been restored to their previous levels.

The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy was announced last week and subsidizes up to 75 per cent of employee wages. Flair has bumped that up to 100 per cent for all employees.

“We resolved at the outset of the outbreak to uphold our civic responsibility to our passengers, employees and the communities we serve,” said Richard Williams, Flair’s vice president of human resources.

“We are proud that, with the help of the Canadian government, we can continue to meet the moment.”

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READ MORE: Air Canada to apply for wage subsidy program to keep workers on payroll amid COVID-19 pandemic

Flair said that while revenue has dropped due to commercial flying patterns dropping by approximately 90 per cent, it has sustained itself by pivoting to new areas of operation, including cargo and charter flights.

The organization said it is “relying heavily” on advice from the government and health officials as it continues to operate.

“When we emerge on the other side of the crisis, Flair will be vital to the pace of the economic and social recovery, by providing reliable and low-cost air travel for Canadians, as well as additional competition in the market,” said CEO Jim Scott.

Flair Airlines has its headquarters based in Edmonton, Alta. Including the 130 rehired employees, it has a staff of 332.