Wednesday, 25 April, 2018

Ryanair's Dublin pilots to strike pre-Christmas

Ryanair's Ireland-based pilots to strike days before Christmas potentially affecting thousands of flights Ryanair pilots to strike in run-up to Christmas
Preston Stone | 13 December, 2017, 08:23

IT looks like passengers using Ryanair services from Shannon Airport will avoid any travel disruption which could come about due to pilots taking strike action.

Ryanair crew and pilots in Italy are striking on Friday, and in Portugal, pilots voted to strike.

Ryanair pilots in Dublin have voted for strike action, the airline confirmed Monday, the latest in a succession of staffing woes for the no-frills carrier.

Trade union the Irish Air Line Pilots' Association announced that a majority of its 84 Ryanair-employed members backed industrial action in a secret ballot which took place this weekend.

Ryanair has 360 pilots based in Dublin.

The balance are employed via third parties such as agencies.

Although the number of employees involved in the strike is fewer than the total number of Irish-based Ryanair pilots, the action will have impact because planes can not legally or safely fly without a captain.

They said: "Less than 28% of Ryanair's Dublin (over 300) pilots have voted in favour of unspecified industrial action".

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However, pilots at a number of Ryanair's big bases have rejected those offers.

They say the walkout will either cause major disruption or will greatly cost the airline if they bring in pilots from other European bases.

In a statement, the airline said there would be some disruption as a result of the strike, which it claimed would be confined to only a small group of pilots are working their notice and will shortly leave the airline.

"Ryanair will not recognise an Aer Lingus pilot union, no matter how often or long this tiny minority (earning between €150,000 to €190,000 p.a.) try to disrupt our flights or customers' plans during Christmas week".

Although the action involves around 80 of the 300 plus Dublin-based Ryanair pilots, Impact says it will cause disruption because planes can not legally or safely fly without a captain.

Ryanair said any Dublin-based pilots who walk out will breach their base labor agreement - and they will lose scheduling and pay benefits and promotion opportunities until they return.

"Every pilot who joins Ryanair clearly understands that we do not negotiate with pilot unions", the airline's chief people officer, Eddie Wilson, told pilots at Ryanair's Bergamo base, in Italy, in a memo.

An IMPACT committee that Ireland's IALPA pilots union operates under will meet today to decide on the next steps, a spokesman for the union said.

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