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Wed, Aug 21, 2019

Ryanair Irish Pilots Withdraw From Mediation

Airline Says No Progress Made On Pilots' 'Unrealistic' Demands

Ryanair pilots and their union Fórsa have withdrawn from Mediation talks chaired by Mr Kieran Mulvey when no progress was made on their pay proposals described by the airline as "unrealistic and unimplementable".

At a mediation meeting held last week, the Ryanair Pilots Committee and Fórsa confirmed that they are seeking pay increases of 101% on top of current annual pay of over €172,000 ($197,000). Ryanair Pilots are insisting on these pay demands being met, just one day after Norwegian announced the closure of its Dublin operations with the loss of over 120 crew jobs, despite the fact that Ryanair has a surplus of over 500 pilots due to the delayed delivery of over 30 MAX aircraft this winter, and just 10 weeks before a “no-deal” Brexit could cause further disruption to air travel and airline jobs in Ireland and the U.K.

Ryanair has called on its pilots and the Fórsa union to return to Independent Mediation with reasonable proposals which reflect the falling airfares and profits Ryanair has recently reported, as well as the fact that Ryanair pilot pay is already 20% ahead of comparable 737 airline pilot pay in Norwegian and Jet2.

“We have done everything in our power to avoid disruption to our flights and our customers’ holidays. However, no company can concede to grossly unreasonable demands from its highest paid workers for a further pay increase of over 100% (when they already agreed and received a 20% pay increase earlier this year) at a time when the airline industry is in crisis," said Ryanair’s Chief People Officer Eddie Wilson.

"Ryanair pilots who are already among the best paid workers in Ireland are now threatening to disrupt the holiday travel plans of thousands of customers over the coming weeks as they demand that their pay be increased from €172,000 ($197,000) p.a. to over €347,000 ($385,000) p.a. that would see them earn more than the President of Ireland, even as Norwegian makes all of its Dublin pilots redundant. We remain willing to engage in Mediation with our pilots and Fórsa but call on them to avoid disrupting our customers’ travel plans in pursuit of what are clearly unrealistic and unimplementable pay proposals,” he said.

The airline has been granted permission to apply for an injunction in the Irish High Court to stop a potential strike by the pilots, a move that was blasted by BALPA.

“This is typical Ryanair bully boy behavior. If they think they can legally bludgeon us and their pilots into submission they are wrong. This is a waste of time and money that would be better spent trying to resolve the dispute," said Brian Strutton, BALPA General Secretary.

“We have offered to talk at ACAS, and Ryanair have refused. This attitude is exactly why we’ve ended up in this dispute with Ryanair – trying to negotiate with them is virtually impossible. They have got a serious situation here with their own workforce. Rather than working with us to improve things, they are dragging this into court.

"Ryanair passengers will be dismayed at the airline’s cavalier attitude that is putting their travel plans at risk.”

(Source: News releases. Image from file)

FMI: www.ryanair.com
www.balpa.org

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