Belfast Telegraph

Ryanair pilots to strike just before Christmas

By John Mulligan

Staff Ryanair pilots in Dublin who are members of the Irish Airline Pilots’ Association (IALPA) are to strike on December 20.

Trade union Impact has confirmed the planned industrial action and warned that additional strike days could also occur.

It said that Ireland-based, directly employed pilots, mostly captains, will stage the strike.

Last week, almost 80 Ryanair staff pilots sanctioned industrial action at the carrier as if faces up to unrest in Ireland and in other European countries.

Last week, IALPA president Evan Cullen wrote to Mr O’Leary, calling on him to engage with IALPA on all aspects of pay, and terms and conditions of employment of directly-employed Ryanair pilots in Ireland. Mr Cullen warned the airline chief that if he didn’t engage, a ballot for industrial action could be held.

The airline has refused to engage with unions, or to recognise a new European Employee Representative Council (EERC) that was established to represent Ryanair bases across the continent.

The council was formed in the wake of September’s pilot rostering fiasco at Ryanair that saw thousands of flights cancelled.

Ryanair does not recognise unions and is legally entitled not to do so. Asked yesterday by if it would seek an injunction in the High Court to prevent any industrial action by pilots in Dublin, the airline said it doesn’t comment on “rumour or speculation”.

Last week, the airline warned pilots in Ireland that it would meet any attempt at industrial action “head on”. It also said it would freeze promotions, cut pilot pay and may even move aircraft out of Dublin if any industrial action was staged.

Impact official Ashley Connolly said Ryanair was the only Irish-based airline that refuses to recognise independent pilot representatives.

“This dispute is solely about winning independent representation for pilots in the company” she said.

Irish Independent

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