Joint strike by Ryanair pilots and cabin crew hits six European countries
30 September 2018
Cabin crews and pilots from six European countries took part in the largest strike so far against Ryanair’s low-wage regime. Work was suspended yesterday for 24 hours in Belgium, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Germany.
More than 240 flights were cancelled across Europe, far more than Ryanair management had expected. One hundred and forty Ryanair flights, or 40 percent of flights, to and from Germany were cancelled. At Berlin’s Schönefeld Airport, 52 out of 90 take-offs and landings were cancelled. Fifteen were cancelled in Hamburg, 19 in Cologne/Bonn and 21 in Frankfurt. Ryanair flights that were able to get off the ground were usually delayed for hours.
“Low Fares, No Cares,” “No Rights—No Flights!” and similar slogans were chanted by several hundred mostly young flight attendents who demonstrated in Berlin and Frankfurt.
While striking Ryanair workers were determined to fight, the Verdi union limited the walkout by crews stationed in Germany to Thursday evening only, fearing that a longer strike might break free from the union’s control.
In Frankfurt, Verdi officials tried to prevent Ryanair strikers from speaking to journalists from the World Socialist Web Site, insisting that no interviews from rank-and-file workers would be permitted, even without attribution. However, the young flight attendants were eager to describe the inhumane conditions they face and to appeal to airline passengers and other workers to support their fight.
At the Frankfurt Airport flight attendants and pilots from Greece, Italy, Bulgaria, France and Germany gathered at Terminal 2. “We simply have to work too much for…