Air Canada is under fire online after the company released a statement reacting to the federal government’s decision to end COVID health measures for travellers this weekend.
Earlier this week Health Canada announced that travellers would no longer need to provide proof of vaccination, undergo testing or quarantining, fill out the ArriveCAN app, wear masks on planes, and much more.
Air Canada responded on Monday, saying it welcomes the government’s decision to end restrictions.
But one quote from the company’s chief operating officer, Craig Landry, has the internet fuming.
“Air Canada welcomes the removal of these restrictions, acknowledging that air travel is safe and that the measures were not justified by science,” Landry stated.
Air Canada welcomes Government of Canada decision to lift mask, testing and ArriveCan requirement.
— Air Canada (@AirCanada) September 26, 2022
“The relaxed measures announced today are expected to advance Air Canada’s ongoing recovery from COVID,” reads the statement.
“This includes significant improvements in on-time performance as compared to earlier in the summer, meaningful reductions in delays and cancellations, a daily flight completion factor now over 98%, as well as baggage handling performance that has fully restabilized at pre-pandemic levels.”
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But travellers aren’t impressed by Landry’s stance, taking to social media to share their grievances.
“Air Canada says masking requirements are ‘not justified by science.’ I’m guessing they’re referring to the ‘science’ of economics,” said one Twitter user. “The drive for profit continues to put more lives at risk.”
Air Canada says masking requirements are “not justified by science.” I’m guessing they’re referring to the “science” of economics. The drive for profit continues to put more lives at risk. https://t.co/NKetop4rTs
— Paris Marx (@parismarx) September 28, 2022
Others pointed out how this would put both customers and employees at risk.
“A garbage response. Why ‘welcome’ the removal of simple measures that protect your customers and your employees?” tweeted one person.
A garbage response.
Why “welcome” the removal of simple measures that protect your customers and your employees?
“Air Canada welcomes the removal of seatbelt requirements from their planes”
You already have staffing problems, you’re thinking that’s a coincidence?
— Alex Smith (@Alex_Smith_Ants) September 29, 2022
This is an Air Canada flight. At one point it reached where 1 out of every 6 breath you inhaled came from someone else. Imagine sitting there maskless for over one hour. https://t.co/TlKa6SHZcq pic.twitter.com/QE8PNyl2j6
— Kyle Minogue 🔬🌞 (@kyle_minogue) September 28, 2022
For context, there have been over four million cases of COVID in the country and close to 45,000 deaths due to the virus, according to Health Canada.
Landry did state that customers and crew would have the option to wear masks, but this person is asking for some flights to maintain the masking requirements “for those of us who otherwise won’t fly after Oct 1 unless no other option.”
Hey @AirCanada there is now a whole unserved market of Covid aware travelers that should be an opportunity for you. Please consider scheduling flights that maintain masking requirements for those of us who otherwise won’t fly after Oct 1 unless no other option.
— Dan Furst (@danfurst) September 27, 2022
Some agreed with the company’s statement, excited about the end of COVID mandates.
Well said, Air Canada, more of this please. 👏 👏 pic.twitter.com/rmyc48PtLC
— Neil Ferguson’s Calculator™ (@ProfessorFerg06) September 29, 2022
None of it, NONE, was EVER justified by science. It was only justified by arrogant people, holding on to their own erroneous views in the name of science, who were later too afraid to admit how much damage they had caused. You go Air Canada! https://t.co/5ku3l2Aqr6
— Rotem Inbar (@InbarRotem) September 29, 2022