Canadian Air Traffic Controllers Buy Pizza For American Colleagues Affected By US Government Disengagement


Canadian air traffic controllers are making a simple but sincere gesture to their American counterparts – they are buying dinner amid the US government's standoff.

Air Traffic Controllers (ATC) in Moncton, N.B. and Gander, Nfld. sent pizza to the controllers who stationed the stations at the New York Air Traffic Control Center (ZNY) in Ronkonkoma, N.Y., on Friday night in support of his colleagues who are working unpaid while the partial shutdown of the US government drags on for its fourth week.

A photo of a sign hanging at the New York Center, which said that 32 pizzas had been ordered by Canadians was posted on Reddit by PlatinumAero, whose real name is David Lombardo.

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Air traffic controllers in Newfoundland and New Brunswick bought pizza for their counterparts in New York.

Lombardo, who heads the ATC Memes Facebook page and is a partner at ATC's, worked at the New York Center and continues to have close contact with air traffic controllers in the United States.

He told HuffPost Canada that the photo was sent to him from one of the controllers who is working at ZNY during the shutdown. He explained that Canadian and American air traffic controllers often work together.

"The New York Center is a radar facility that handles much of the domestic and international air traffic. Part of the airspace of the center is across Canadian airspace, meaning these controllers" deliver "airplanes to each other and work together to keep the planes safe, "Lombard said.

The government shutdown is significantly affecting air traffic controllers – according to Lombardo, some have already suffered stoppages before, but never those that have lasted so long.

Union of air traffic controllers taking the trump card to court. The story continues after the video.

"Many drivers who work for the [Federal Administration Aviation] we literally get checks that say $ 0.00, and many are doing overtime, holidays, work nights, weekends, and are in facilities that are already understaffed, "Lombardo said. To add to the stress of not knowing when they will get paid, this has to be difficult for many. "

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Vancouver air traffic controllers bought lunch for their counterparts in Seattle.

Air traffic controllers in Atlantic Canada are not the only Canadians reaching their American counterparts.

The Montreal Center sent pizza at the Boston Center, while Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport sent pizza to its counterparts in Burlington, Vermont and LaGuardia, N.Y.

The center of the Toronto area sent pizza to his colleagues at the Cleveland Center while Vancouver bought pizza for the Seattle Center.

"In many cases, they are radar control facilities that buy into the facilities of the neighboring sector," Lombardo said.

The torrent of support is not over yet – Lombardo said Winnipeg Tower is sending dinner to the Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport tower Sunday night and already covered the Grand Forks lunch on Saturday.

In many cases, they are radar control facilities that buy for the installation of the neighboring sector.David Lombardo

Another Reddit user commented on Lombardo's topic and said he received an e-mail from the Toronto trade union, noting that pizzas are an initiative that occurs in centers across the country.

"As a gesture of solidarity to our American controllers, we will be sending pizza to the controllers at the Cleveland Center for dinner. They are in the midst of the government shutdown and, as of yesterday, they have not received their paychecks," he said. -mail. . "All ACC's across the country will be buying pizzas for their adjoining centers."

HuffPost Canada has contacted the Canadian Air Traffic Control Association to confirm.

Lombardo, who lives in Long Island, NY, told HuffPost Canada that the shutdown is leading some people to take desperate steps such as taking loans, and that people even exchanged messages on the ATC page to ask him to share information about different lending programs.

Airline controllers have not been paid for their work in the first two weeks of 2019, and many are urging US President Donald Trump to end the government's closure.

"This partial shutdown has already caused real damage to our country's aviation system and the impacts will only get worse over time," wrote a group of aviation organizations, including the National Air Traffic Control Association, in an open letter sent to government officials.

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"As the shutdown persists, air traffic controllers and technical operations workers who operate and maintain safety-critical navigation, surveillance and communication equipment are performing highly qualified and critical safety services without compensation" .

National Association of Air Traffic Controllers also filed suit against the Trump administration on Friday for allegedly violating the Fifth Amendment, depriving the controllers of "sweaty pay without due process."

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