The Irish air carrier Ryanair Holdings Plc, European largest low-coster, is ready to recognize the pilots trade unions for the first time in 32 years of company’s operations. With such move the airline aims to avoid strikes and interruptions of flights in Christmas and New Year holidays period. The air carrier will organize meetings with pilots organizations to negotiate further changes of employment agreements.
“Recognition of trade unions will be a significant change for Ryanair, but we have already implemented radical changes”, said the CEO of Ryanair, Michael O’Leary. He called on the staff to cancel the planned protests.
Ryanair wrote to pilot organizations in the UK, Germany, Ireland, Spain, Italy and Portugal, inviting them to the negotiating table. The company recognizes the trade unions provided that committees are created from the pilots of Ryanair to solve problems in the relations with the company. It does not intend to interact with pilots working for competitors.
Italian pilots of Ryanair organized 4-hour strike on December 15. The members of the Irish Pilot Association were going to stop work for the whole day on December 20. The German union of pilots Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) announced its readiness to strike at any time without specifying the date, but promised that the termination of work will not affect the period of Christmas holidays from December 23 to December 26.
Such strikes will be the first in the history of Ryanair.
The refusal to cooperate with trade unions was one of the elements of the business model of the low-coster. The associations of pilots hope to attract the company to negotiations in order to coordinate market conditions of work and payment.
Previously, Ryanair was forced to announce the cancellation of more than 20,000 flights for several months because of problems with the schedules of pilots and incorrect calculation of holidays. The company plans to hire more than a hundred new pilots.