Lufthansa pilots vote for industrial action on pay

A Lufthansa Airbus A320 landing at Brussels Airport in Zaventem, Belgium, July 29, 2022. Pilots of German flagship carrier Lufthansa voted by a 97.6 percent margin in favor of industrial action on Sunday, threatening further disruptions during the busy summer travel season.

Thierry Monasse | Getty Images News | Getty Images

Pilots of Germany’s flagship carrier Lufthansa voted by a 97.6% margin in favor of industrial action on Sunday, threatening further disruption during the busy summer travel season.

Strikes and staff shortages have already forced airlines including Lufthansa to cancel thousands of flights and caused hour-long queues at major airports, frustrating holidaymakers keen to travel after Covid-19 lockdowns. 19.

The vote does not necessarily mean a strike will take place, but it was a signal to the employer that constructive action needed to be taken, said Marcel Groels, board member of the pilots’ union Vereinigung Cockpit (VC ).

“We are showing that we are ready to talk,” he added.

A Lufthansa spokesman said he respects the results of the vote and hopes for a constructive solution at the negotiating table.

The VC pilots’ union is demanding a 5.5% pay rise this year for its pilots and automatic inflation compensation thereafter.

He also wants a uniform pay structure for all airline staff in the Lufthansa Group, which includes flagship carrier Lufthansa as well as budget unit Eurowings.

Lufthansa has already been rocked by a strike by its ground staff on Wednesday, which forced the carrier to cancel more than 1,000 flights.

Meanwhile, pilots from Lufthansa’s Swiss International Air Lines (SWISS) unit have 80% rejected a contract proposal, their Aeropers union said on Sunday, adding that it aims to resume negotiations with SWISS management as soon as possible. as possible.

“If management continues not to recognize the signs of the times and does not immediately come up with adequate solutions, then the drivers must make it even clearer to management how unhappy they are,” he said without giving further details. details.

The current contract expired in April after management rejected a tentative deal from initial talks, Aeropers said.

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