The Irish low-cost airline Ryanair announced it has reached several agreements on working conditions with pilot unions in several European countries at a time when cabin crew members are threatening to strike again. Agreements are step ahead for Ryanair, but they are far from addressing the social demands of pilots in some countries and, above all, the cabin crew who led the recent strikes at the low-cost company.
In today’s announcement, the company says it has signed an agreement this week with the pilots union SPAC in Portugal, with Balpa in the UK and with ANPAC in Italy, providing for better working conditions as well as negotiating a collective agreement.
Signing a collective agreement should allow pilots hired by Ryanair to have contracts that comply with the legislation of the country of residence of the pilot rather than Ireland’s legislation. Trade unions have been insisting on this for months.
Ryanair is also expected to sign an agreement with the Spanish pilots union SEPTA soon, which will also pave the way for signing a collective bargaining agreement.
The Belgian trade union CNE said in a statement last night that it “puts the company on a probationary period” as it does with its employees.
The union threatened to organize more strike days before the end of the year if the airline did not radically change its position and attitude.
Earlier this week, airline chief Michael O’Leary said that it is possible in Germany to reach agreement over the next three weeks with the pilots and cabin crew.
On September 28th, Ryanair’s pilots and cabin crew in Germany, Belgium, Portugal, the Netherlands, Spain and Italy stormed for 24 hours, forcing the airline to cancel 250 flights in Europe. There were 40,000 passengers affected.