moved for leave to introduce Bill C-541, An Act respecting the rights of air passengers.
Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to introduce Canada's first air passenger bill of rights. The bill relates to laws and regulations already in place in Europe and the United States. This is a newly amended version of Bill C-310 and continues to focus on compensation for overbooked flights, cancelled flights, unreasonable tarmac delays, delayed flights and many other provisions. It would also require all-inclusive pricing, that being the total cost of a trip, and airline advertising.
The new version incorporates amendments suggested by the other parties during the first bill's year-long journey through the debates and committee rooms of Parliament. It now includes the following; it clarifies the process by which the airlines can appeal to the Canadian Transportation Agency to decide whether delays are caused by decisions made by an airport authority or other agencies; and it reduces compensation from the first bill for tarmac delays from $500 to $100 per hour but only up to the ticket price, and for denied boarding and cancelled flights by 50%, to $250, $400 and $600, depending on the length of the flight, and only up to the price of the ticket.
I introduced my first air passengers' bill of rights to Parliament just months before the Obama administration began changing its regulations and fining airlines for what was considered unfair treatment of passengers involving tarmac delays. The American fines now add up to $27,500 per passenger for tarmac delays over three hours, with the money going to the government.
My bill has always been much more moderate in compensation, with the money going to the paying passengers who suffer the inconvenience. The bill is not meant to punish the airline industry but merely to correct bad behaviour. If the airlines follow the rules, they will not have to pay any compensation.
Air Canada and Air Transit are already operating under these kinds of laws for their flights to Europe. Today, Canadian passengers get better treatment when they fly to Europe than when they fly in Canada. Canadians want to know why they should not get first class treatment--