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HAC’s Convention - a Crucible for Industry Issues

HAC’s 2019 Convention concluded on Saturday with a flurry of activity.   What emerged from the discussion, were a variety of key issues for action in the coming year. At the top of the list are Fatigue Management regulations and the Human Resource crisis we are facing. The new Fatigue rules are scheduled to come in to force in three years – but that doesn’t make the issue any less important. Bad news never gets better with time, as they say – and your Board is still actively engaged in a strategy that hopefully finds some relief for our industry sector.

While a number of operators are making efforts to bring on low-time pilots, HAC is still working to drive the Federal Government to formulate a National Labour Market policy for aviation – that will contemplate pilots, engineers, and the skilled trades. There was considerable discussion of funding for up-skilling and programs that would encourage young people to select a career in the helicopter industry.  Betsy Kane of Capelle Kane, Immigration Lawyers spoke to our delegates on ways to bring experienced foreign workers into Canada; and the Canadian Council for Aviation & Aerospace and the IAMAW spoke to us about their strategies, to mitigate the HR crisis in the Aerospace sector, as set out in “Grounded Potential” 

HAC had a spirited Town Hall session with Joe Szwalek, Transport Canada’s Associate Director General, where members were able to engage him in a dialogue on the issues of-the-day, including SMS, Fatigue Management, Aircraft Registration delays, to name only a few.  Committees Day was well attended, and a summary of the key issues raised in those sessions will be provided in an upcoming issue of the HAC Newsletter. Chuck Aaron provided about 500 delegates with some insight into the life of an Aerobatic Helicopter pilot – not for the faint of heart – and with the accompanying warning “Don’t try this at home”.