Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

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DanWEC
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Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by DanWEC »

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/ ... E#comments

Talk of the government kicking in money to train pilots due to the shortage.

While it sounds nice at first blush, I can't even describe how much this infuriates me.

A handful of crappy 703 operators, and Air Canada, only have themselves to squarely blame for their problems. For the most part, The 703's have substantially improved conditions out of necessity, and the bad apples that didn't shut their doors.
The Airlines, generally led by trends at AC, have not. AC dug the bottom out quite a bit more with their 4 year flat pay and regional contract schemes.
All AC has done is reaction is to start hiring anyone and everyone they can.... Great idea.

So instead of the airlines increasing WAWCON to make the jobs attractive again, they decide instead that mine and yours TAXPAYER funded money should be used to get asses in seats. Think about that. It's just corporate bottom line at work- they care about literally nothing else, and naturally McKenna is behind it.

About all I can do is write Garneau with my opinion, but I doubt that will go anywhere unless it's joined by many others.
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Capt. Underpants
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by Capt. Underpants »

Oversimplifying complex problems rarely results in effective solutions. You may not like it but it is entirely within the government's purview to consider the economic effects of parking airplanes for a lack of qualified crew. This is exactly the kind of thing we should want our government involved with. Our government bought a multi-billion dollar pipeline to help out the economy of Alberta (which I fully support), in spite of the fact that Alberta and the industry lived high off the hog in good times and didn't salt away enough for a rainy day. So, I fail to see why this program to encourage pilot training is such a bad idea.

But I may be biased. I remember getting help to obtain my multi-IFR from a Federal employment training program in the early 80's. At the time, I could not afford it myself and it would have taken a long time to drum up the cash. Getting that funding accelerated my ability to gain meaningful employment by at least two years and I more than paid it back in income taxes in those two years.
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ayseven
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by ayseven »

It is a bit reactionary, rather than proactive. Airlines are no different than any other business though. When you haven't planned, make a big deal to the taxpayer... It has worked for them for years.
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DanWEC
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by DanWEC »

Interesting to hear another perspective.
However I don't beleive it's oversimplification, I just outlined it in simple terms. Was the race to the bottom catalyzed by a former glut of pilots not the crux of the problem?
Yes, training is expensive, and many of us worked multiple unrelated jobs to get through it, and the first "flying" jobs are tough, but there used to be a much brighter light at the end of the tunnel.

As for mitigating economic impacts... well, I grudgingly agree, but is it not frustrating to see that they're being essentially bailed out of a bed made with their own greed?
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ayseven
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by ayseven »

They appear to be waiting for the next "market correction", meanwhile let's see what we can extract from the people without changing our business models.
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Capt. Underpants
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by Capt. Underpants »

I disagree that the reason for the situation was simply airline greed. First of all, airlines don't much care which pilots get which percentage of the payroll. They go to the table with an amount of money they're willing to spend and it gets divided up by both the Union and management. Union leaders don't tend to care about newbies when they're building the pay scale. "I paid my dues, so can they". And for what it's worth, most managers paid those dues too. So, as their peers, we're as much to blame as the companies are for the state of WAWCON for new pilots.

Also, no one could have envisioned our young people being reluctant to make the kind of sacrifices most of us old timers had to make to succeed in this business. That's a cultural change that was caused by many factors, and it's not just affecting aviation. Medicine is also facing a shortage of young doctors for the same reasons.
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goingnowherefast
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by goingnowherefast »

Bring the pay rates up to match those in the US and I bet much of the Canadian pilot shortage will be gone. Oh, adopt the US fatigue rules too. The executives need to send their managers to the negotiating table with much more money. The union and management are deciding how to divide up the table scraps.

For a job starting at $40,000/yr, not many people will take out a 90 grand student loan. For a $75,000/yr job, you'll have many more people willing to take out the loan. More banks willing to finance the loans too.

AC's flat pay should double, and the senior WB captains should make 25% more. Raises for everybody, and no more squabbling over scraps. The trickle down effect to the rest of the industry would be phenominal!

The part that pisses me off about this is the major airlines are producing record revenue. No need to rob tax payers. They can damn well afford to run their own training programs for 0 hour cadidates.
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DanWEC
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by DanWEC »

Capt. Underpants wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 3:46 pm

Also, no one could have envisioned our young people being reluctant to make the kind of sacrifices most of us old timers had to make to succeed in this business. That's a cultural change that was caused by many factors, and it's not just affecting aviation. Medicine is also facing a shortage of young doctors for the same reasons.
While I generally agree about the degree of work ethic and resiliency instilled in the younger generation, there are also some valid problems they face. My first apartment, at 18, in a major city was $352 a month. Only 30% of a full time pay cheque at minimum wage, and it wasn't a basement hole. That would be beyond laughable now.
When I said the light at the end of the tunnel was brighter, it was. Airline wages have not only stagnated but went in decline while the cost of living has tripled in 20 years. Now it's quite almost impossible for someone in today's economy to bleed for 10 years+ post CPL before cracking 100k in a major city with a major airline, when you could do that in 2 years doing IT sales. Funny, that used to be a lot of money but now is treading water in YYZ or YVR.

If airline salaries kept up with COL and weren't so top end biased, they wouldn't be asking for our tax money.
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seven-oh-nooo
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by seven-oh-nooo »

DanWEC wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 1:36 pm
It's just corporate bottom line at work- they care about literally nothing else
Correct, but name an industry that serves the masses where that isn’t true.
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digits_
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by digits_ »

Capt. Underpants wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 3:46 pm


Also, no one could have envisioned our young people being reluctant to make the kind of sacrifices most of us old timers had to make to succeed in this business. That's a cultural change that was caused by many factors, and it's not just affecting aviation. Medicine is also facing a shortage of young doctors for the same reasons.
No, part of the problem is that the people who made the "sacrifices" up north might actually be enjoying the current position at their job and might be unwilling to take a 50% pay cut to go to the airlines. For example 703 and 704 captains making >100k. Those would generally be the pilots moving to the regionals or mainline. But in every scenario available at this time, they would have to take a 40-50% pay cut.

Sure, in 10 years you might crack 100k or 200k, but by the time that happens, pay scales might have changed again or you might be at the bottom of yet another seniority list. It's the 703 and 704 cpts that the 705 operators should, ideally, want. But they don't want to pay for it. So that causes some trouble.
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by C-GGGQ »

If they move to mainline they'll reach that 100-200 k in 2 years ish not 10. Regionals yeah it's longer
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by valleyboy »

It might be mute. Just consider the group entering the biz now could very well be the last group of "qualified" pilots for airlines. If automation keeps up it's current pace they will not need pilots but qualified computer technicians. I guess the question is will there be 100 year old HO's left to fly -- :D
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by goingnowherefast »

DanWEC wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 8:00 pm
While I generally agree about the degree of work ethic and resiliency instilled in the younger generation, there are also some valid problems they face. My first apartment, at 18, in a major city was $352 a month. Only 30% of a full time pay cheque at minimum wage, and it wasn't a basement hole. That would be beyond laughable now.
When I said the light at the end of the tunnel was brighter, it was. Airline wages have not only stagnated but went in decline while the cost of living has tripled in 20 years. Now it's quite almost impossible for someone in today's economy to bleed for 10 years+ post CPL before cracking 100k in a major city with a major airline, when you could do that in 2 years doing IT sales. Funny, that used to be a lot of money but now is treading water in YYZ or YVR.

If airline salaries kept up with COL and weren't so top end biased, they wouldn't be asking for our tax money.
This!! Exactly this!!! (bolded for the most important part)

Airlines should take some of the record profits and fund their own damn training programs. They made the pilot shortage, they have record profits, they can afford to get out of the mess too.
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by digits_ »

C-GGGQ wrote:
Sat Jan 04, 2020 10:11 am
If they move to mainline they'll reach that 100-200 k in 2 years ish not 10. Regionals yeah it's longer
Maybe, if the seniority train keeps going like it is now. If the hiring stops tomorrow, they'll be FOs for a long time and be on flat pay for at least 5. At least some people are scared off by that.

If it takes you 5 year to get back to 100k, then it probably takes another 5 to compensate for the loss you took during those first 5 years.
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by TalkingPie »

Government giving subsidies to the airlines to train new pilots is like giving money to an African war lord to help fight community poverty.

The big airlines in Canada have shown time and again that any windfalls they receive don't go to their employees; that's how we got into this pilot shortage in the first place. As was said above, they've been making record profits every year for years, the stock prices are through the roof, and yet they've taken zero initiative to address the supply of qualified pilots that they need for their business. If nothing else, the airlines will use these subsidies to justify keeping wages low - "We helped pay to train you; you can work for $40k."

As much as I'd enjoy free money to help me get qualified faster and more easily, putting it in the hands of the airlines will probably hurt Canadian pilots more than it helps, to say nothing of the Canadian taxpayer.
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by jakeandelwood »

So the airlines pay crap for the 1st years or so, they create a self inflicted shortage, because people that have bills to pay just aren't going to bother becoming a pilot or pilots are just going to say "faq it" and quit (myself). Now they want the taxpayer to fix it? Other professions will up their pay, especially starting pay to entice new workers to choose said profession as an attractive career choice.
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by 7ECA »

One article I saw stated that there is a shortage of "right seaters" - thus the government should step in and throw some cash at the problem. I'm imaging there will be a push on amongst the larger schools to start a pseudo integrated program for local students - fast track applicants from zero time to a Multi-Crew Licence. Seeing how the airlines only need right seaters, it would be the perfect solution - licence up a pile of permanent FOs to bridge the gap.

Now, I know what you're thinking; "but what happens in X number of years when retirements take hold - who's going to Captain flights?". Not a problem, you see the current bunch of FOs, and all those struggling to make their way through the industry will be attracted to the airlines once they see they can get a captaincy, all because the FOs can't. See, problem solved.

And then in Y number of years, they'll change the rules and it'll all work out. Or there'll be single pilot airliners by then, or AI, or something...
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by JohnnyHotRocks »

There will never be a shortage of right seaters. It is experience that is in short supply.
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L39Guy
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by L39Guy »

ATAC, the government lobby group for some of the airlines, still doesn't get it. They want someone else to pay for the talent they want flying their airplanes. Have the government guarantee loans for the student pilot but at the end of the day the student pilot is still the one carrying the $100,000+ debt with the prospect of a $30,000/year job. ATAC deserves the pilot shortage it is enduring with that kind of attitude.

Given the high costs of commercial pilot training, it should be treated like post secondary education in this country - largely government subsidized at accredited schools. Med school, dental school, engineering school, trades school are all publicly funded to roughly 85% of their costs from the government - that is one of the reasons, and a good reason, why we pay high taxes in this country. Flying training, with caveats and controls, should be similarly subsidized but only for professional programs, i.e. not for private licenses, etc.

In order to have proper controls so that the Joe's Flying School doesn't rip off the government (read taxpayer), this would have to be provided by bona fide aviation colleges which would mean a formal, post secondary education. For the naysers out there that say that one does not need a post secondary education to fly an airplane, I am not interested in debating that whatsoever. But clearly, assistance to individuals to get the appropriate training is required as the finanical barrier to entry is too high.

ATAC, with its continuing attitude of making someone else pay (in this case the individual) to provide us the talent at no cost simply underscores how little they understand about the challenges facing young people wanting to fly for a living. If they (the ATAC members which not include AC or WJ) are not prepared to pay for the training of "the talent" then at least pay them a wage where they have some prospect of repaying the training costs.
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by rookiepilot »

L39Guy wrote:
Tue Jan 07, 2020 10:14 am

Given the high costs of commercial pilot training, it should be treated like post secondary education in this country - largely government subsidized at accredited schools. Med school, dental school, engineering school, trades school are all publicly funded to roughly 85% of their costs from the government - that is one of the reasons, and a good reason, why we pay high taxes in this country. Flying training, with caveats and controls, should be similarly subsidized but only for professional programs, i.e. not for private licenses, etc.
None should be subsidized. No one subsidized the start up of my business, nor did I look for any. Why should the taxpayer subsidize anyone else's career is beyond me.

All of this subsidizing has done is drive up the cost of post secondary education, and drive the quality down.

It's created an arms race, where employers practically want an MBA for entry level banking positions.

Debt of all kinds, including student debt, results in servitude. More young people should "just say no".
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Last edited by rookiepilot on Tue Jan 07, 2020 2:54 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by digits_ »

rookiepilot wrote:
Tue Jan 07, 2020 1:58 pm
L39Guy wrote:
Tue Jan 07, 2020 10:14 am

Given the high costs of commercial pilot training, it should be treated like post secondary education in this country - largely government subsidized at accredited schools. Med school, dental school, engineering school, trades school are all publicly funded to roughly 85% of their costs from the government - that is one of the reasons, and a good reason, why we pay high taxes in this country. Flying training, with caveats and controls, should be similarly subsidized but only for professional programs, i.e. not for private licenses, etc.
None should be subsidized. No one subsidized the start up of my business, nor did I look for any. Why should the taxpayer subsidize anyone else's career is beyond me.

All of this subsidizing has done is drive up the cost of post secondary education, and drive the quality down.
The idea would be that your business would have access to cheaper doctors, lawyers, engineers, scientists etc. It is a system that works pretty good in Europe. But I'm sure you know that.
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by Capt. Underpants »

rookiepilot wrote:
Tue Jan 07, 2020 1:58 pm
None should be subsidized. No one subsidized the start up of my business, nor did I look for any. Why should the taxpayer subsidize anyone else's career is beyond me.
I'm reminded of a certain Roger Waters lyric.
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by L39Guy »

rookiepilot wrote:
Tue Jan 07, 2020 1:58 pm
L39Guy wrote:
Tue Jan 07, 2020 10:14 am

Given the high costs of commercial pilot training, it should be treated like post secondary education in this country - largely government subsidized at accredited schools. Med school, dental school, engineering school, trades school are all publicly funded to roughly 85% of their costs from the government - that is one of the reasons, and a good reason, why we pay high taxes in this country. Flying training, with caveats and controls, should be similarly subsidized but only for professional programs, i.e. not for private licenses, etc.
None should be subsidized. No one subsidized the start up of my business, nor did I look for any. Why should the taxpayer subsidize anyone else's career is beyond me.

All of this subsidizing has done is drive up the cost of post secondary education, and drive the quality down.

It's created an arms race, where employers practically want an MBA for entry level banking positions.

Debt of all kinds, including student debt, results in servitude. More young people should "just say no".
I have news for you. The taxpayers of this country already subsidize education. In the province where I live, the government contributes 85% of the cost of post secondary education, the student pays a mere 15% of the cost. Personally, I think that is a good thing and am glad that my tax dollar is used for that purpose. It allows one to pursue an education based upon merit not social class, unlike other western countries where talented, less privileged students cannot move up the social ladder but instead those kids with rich mommies and daddies can. Finances should not be a barrier to advanced education.

A friend of mine's son could not get into a Canadian med school; instead he is going to med school in Ireland. The cost of the 4 year program: $270K Cdn in tuition fees. That reflects the true cost of the education. The same four year program at my alma mater is ~50K in tuition.

Subsidizing education is not the same as subsidizing a business; the government has no business in business but it has every business in being in the business of advancing education, pre and post secondary. In other words, investing in human capital. Using your logic, government shouldn't pay for grades 1-12 either.

An advanced aviation education (look at a private license being a secondary education and commercial, IFR, etc being a post-secondary education) is a good investment in human resources not unlike investing in doctors, nurses, engineers, plumbers, etc as we do already at trade schools and universities. We need an education workforce, we need professional pilots; why should prospective, professional pilot's education not be subsidized by the taxpayer the way other profession's education is too?
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by C-GGGQ »

I think he's saying that we've quickly come to the point where "when everyone has a degree, no one has a degree" most jobs do not require a degree. They require specific training. Even when you think of doctors and lawyers. While their specific training is in the form of a degree it could easily just be called a license. A bachelor's degree has been so devalued that it is virtually useless other than "everyone else has one so I need one too"
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Re: Possible Government assistance for training pilots.....given to the airlines?!

Post by rookiepilot »

C-GGGQ wrote:
Tue Jan 07, 2020 6:52 pm
I think he's saying that we've quickly come to the point where "when everyone has a degree, no one has a degree" most jobs do not require a degree. They require specific training. Even when you think of doctors and lawyers. While their specific training is in the form of a degree it could easily just be called a license. A bachelor's degree has been so devalued that it is virtually useless other than "everyone else has one so I need one too"
Someone who gets it.

Never mind the degradation in the quality of education that subsidies create, along with outright scams.


We simply can't afford to take this to it's logical extension, and have unlimited numbers of career students.

I'm sure the ivory tower club disagrees ----
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