Strike drums at Ryanair this summer, high season for flights due to tourism, for their labor disputes. Seven European unions, including the Spanish USO and SITCPLA, have warned the Irish low-cost airline of the call for strikes in the summer period if there is no “substantial change” in the working conditions of cabin crew (TCP ) and puts an end to various “irregularities”.
The Labor Inspectorate forces Ryanair to stop charging its crew for water on flights
After the strikes of 2018 and 2019, Ryanair is once again facing another summer marked by the threat of strikes due to conflicts over the working conditions of its staff in Spain and other European countries.
Specifically, the European workers’ organizations that have issued the warning are the Belgian unions ACV PULS and CNE, the French SNPNC, the Portuguese SNPVAC, the Italian UILTRASPORTI and the Spanish USO and SITCPLA. They all sign a joint statement warning that “Ryanair must change.”
“We want 2022 to be the year of recovery, but also of true social dialogue. The management through fear at Ryanair must stop. The Ryanair cabin crew community deserves to be respected and refuses to be intimidated.
Basic requirements, such as the minimum wage in Spain
Among the demands defended by the workers, which USO indicates have already been transferred to Ryanair’s management, is “the application of basic labor rights, which will not be subject to negotiation”, such as, for example, “ending remuneration for below the SMI” (interprofessional minimum wage) in Spain.
Recently, the Labor Inspection required Ryanair to pay the minimum wage to its workers at the Girona base, following a complaint filed by USO.
The resolution of the labor authority concluded that “in all these cases the company has not guaranteed workers the minimum interprofessional salary, which in 2021 amounts to 950 euros per month,” the union reported.
The European unions denounce that the cabin crew continues to work without free access to water on board the plane, despite having been sanctioned by the Labor Inspectorate in Spain.
End “illegal transfer” through subcontracts
USO also demands “to cease the hiring of workers through the illegal assignment of workers” by subcontractors linked to the airline, a practice accredited by the Inspection and the National High Court. In this sense, the European unions urge the multinational to “abide by court rulings, so far ignored by the company with the inaction of local and European authorities.”
The workers’ representatives are demanding that the Ireland-based airline adapt “to the various national laws and social norms in the countries where they operate”, an ongoing battle of the unions in the different countries. For example, USO has denounced “zero hour” contracts, with specific examples that this medium has been able to consult. These contracts are illegal in Spain, but they are present in British law.
In addition, there are claims about “the rights of workers to organize themselves in unions of their choice, participating in collective bargaining”, as well as greater transparency “in the transfer system and in career advancements”.
The unions also denounce “the fact that governments are too cautious when questioning the Ryanair model, leaving workers defenseless against the dumping and also to passengers exposed to disturbances”, denounces USO.
A few days ago, Ryanair threatened to close the open hangar in Seville due to a conflict with the workers, who also denounced irregularities on the part of the company. Although the unions called off the strike at the workplace as a result of talks with the subcontractor linked to the airline, Ryanair has diverted work from this hangar to others and the future of the warehouse is “up in the air”, ABC reports.