Following the announcement earlier this week that pilots from Ryanair are planning to take strike action, cabin and ground crew have followed and informed that they are intending to go on strike later in the month. The plans from workers in Italy, Belgium, Portugal and Spain are to walk out on July 25th and 26th in protest to the ongoing disputes over their working conditions.
The recent Ryanair Cabin Crew Summit in Dublin led to the publication of the Ryanair Crew Charter. This outlines the staffs demands, and covers issues ranging from safety, the culture of the workplace and economic conditions. The company, which is Europe’s busiest airline, has only recently recognised unions in the hope that it would create a better relationship between its staff and the management.
Since then, unions have reported feelings of “frustration” over the airlines stance and refusal to negotiate with its workers. According to the unions involved with the strike action, the company’s attitude is one of ‘here’s what you’re going to get now go away quietly’.
The International Transport Workers Federation, who represent workers in numerous countries across Europe has openly spoken about the lack of willingness to recognise unions, which has led to a massive lack of progress in talks between staff and managers. It added that there have been no concrete improvements in pay or working conditions and the airline is reluctant to sign recognition agreements.
The airline has seen a lot of disruption in the last few years. It’s recently made changes to its baggage allowance rules in a bid to improve its poor record with flight delays and customer satisfaction. However, with strike action becoming more and more likely, customers could face major problems this summer. Ryanair crew have warned that there could be further disruption is the airline doesn’t address their concerns.
Ryanair have labelled the demands as “pointless” and say that staff enjoy good working conditions. But, with the airlines reputation at stake if it has to cancel more flights due to a lack of staff, it might just have to give in. Even though passengers continue to use the company, even after thousands of flights were cancelled last year, this could be the final straw and Ryanair could face major problems if customers choose to avoid the airline in future.