Aviation unions threaten action

The group of unions at Aer Lingus and Dublin Airport Authority have warned that their members will begin industrial action if no progress is made on their troubled pension scheme by Sept 20.

Earlier this month, 4,500 staff in the two companies, including ground and cabin crew and DAA employees, voted in favour of action if their employers made changes to the Irish Aviation Superannuation Scheme without their agreement.

That scheme had a deficit of almost €750m and there were fears over its ability to pay out as the shortfall has mounted.

When the ballot result was announced, the Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) said it was available for meaningful negotiations. It said the time had come “for the companies to put forward realistic proposals that are capable of being given serious consideration”. It said there was a window of opportunity of two to four weeks.

In correspondence between ICTU and the Labour Relations Commission seen by the Irish Examiner, ICTU said it would not take action which might negatively affect the potential for constructive dialogue.

However, it said the ballot for action was borne out of great frustration and anger “at the failure of the companies to seriously engage on their responsibility to do anything constructive regarding the deficit”.

It said the unions were anxious to re-engage but “if there is no progress made by Sept 20, there will be industrial action taken as a result”.


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