Due to continuing government shutdown around 10,000 air traffic controllers in the United States have been working without pay since late December.
They have got industry wide support from all over the world. The latest instance being that the Canadian air traffic controllers have bought hundreds of pizzas for their American counterparts over the past few days
It all started when employees at Edmonton’s control center took up a collection to buy pies for controllers in Anchorage, Alaska and then others joined in.
“The next thing we knew, our members were buying pizzas left, right and center for the colleagues in the U.S,” Duffey said. “As it stands right now, I believe we’re up to 36 facilities that have received pizza from Canada, and that number is growing by the hour.” said Peter Duffey, the head of the Canadian Air Traffic Control Association.
“Air traffic control is a very stressful job,” he said. “They say you have to be 100 per cent right, 100 per cent of the time. People just don’t need to be reporting to work with the added stress of worrying about how to pay their mortgages and grocery bills on top of it.” he added.
Ron Singer, the national media manager for Nav Canada, which manages the country’s civil air navigation, said Canadian and American air traffic controllers interact “on a daily basis” as they manage North American airspace.