Nfld. & Labrador

Layoffs for some St. John's airport screening staff as COVID-19 decimates passenger traffic

Some screening officers at St. John's International Airport have been temporarily laid off due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but their employer says it won't affect the safety of travellers.

Securitas Transport Aviation Security says it hopes to recall them soon

Some screening officers at the St. John's International Airport have been temporarily laid off due to the COVID-19 pandemic. File photo. (Jonathan Hayward/Canadian Press)

Some screening officers at St. John's International Airport have been laid off due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but their employer says it won't affect the safety of travellers. 

Securitas Transport Aviation Security, the private company that employs screening officers at the province's biggest airport, confirmed in an email Thursday morning that it "temporarily laid off" some employees so "operations could remain viable in the long term," although it did not disclose how many people are out of work. 

The COVID-19 global health crisis has grounded flights around the world and halted non-essential travel within Canada. 

"Consequently, the volume of passenger traffic has significantly diminished in the past weeks," the company said in the statement.

Several flights in and out of the St. John's International Airport have been cancelled. 

Securitas operates in contract with the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority, and said it assures "the safety, security and highest quality of service for the travelling public."

"Our objective is to recall these employees in the near future," the company said.

Read more from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador

With files from Meg Roberts

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