Ryanair announced cuts to 20% of its Dublin-based fleet this winter and possibly the dismissal of 100 pilots and 200 cabin crew in the weeks to come. This decision comes in the immediate aftermath of a series of one-day strikes by Irish based pilots and further industrial action across Europe. It will fuel frustration among its workforce even further and risks exposing Ryanair passengers to ever more uncertainty about their travel plans over the summer. Rather than responding in a positive manner to its crew’s demands for fair and decent working conditions (this dispute is not about pay), Ryanair has determined to take a decision that has significant potential to harm even more of their customers.
Ryanair's decision can be interpreted at best as a very immature response to legitimate strike action. At worst - as a bold attempt at union busting
“This unfortunate and entirely avoidable decision by Ryanair can be interpreted at best as a very immature response to legitimate strike action. At worst as a bold attempt at union busting and an effort to put maximum pressure on pilots to stop industrial action” says ECA President Dirk Polloczek. “But most of all: this decision can only backfire. Ryanair pilots in Dublin and across Europe are united and determined to obtain direct employment contracts governed by the local law of the country they are based in – not Irish law. They strive for a fair and transparent Master Seniority Agreement, something that is a common standard across the industry. Why not at Ryanair? It would be entirely feasible for Ryanair to address these concerns in a constructive manner. Why chose confrontation and put the travel plans of thousands of their passengers at risk? Weren’t the 18.000+ cancelled flights and over 700.000 affected passengers enough, last autumn, when Ryanair messed up their pilot rostering system?”
The myth of union ‘friendly’ Ryanair is falling apart and this in front of everybody’s eyes
“The myth of union ‘friendly’ Ryanair is falling apart – and this in front of everybody’s eyes”, says ECA Secretary General Philip von Schöppenthau. “It is more than obvious that the airline’s current management is not open to any genuine social dialogue or meaningful negotiations. Worse, it is reverting to its previous anti-union tactics, while claiming publicly to constructively engage with its unions. Nothing could be further from the reality on the ground, where negotiations in most countries are blocked or progressing at a snail’s pace. Crucially, such provocation and unnecessary behaviour will only encourage even more pilots to leave Ryanair for competitor airlines. This decision risks entering aviation history as a sad episode of human resources hara-kiri.”