Date set for meeting between Aer Lingus and union on cost-saving proposals

Meeting comes after both cabin crew and ground handling staff rejected plans

Aer Lingus lost €563 million last year amid the coronavirus pandemic, and recorded a €192 million loss for the first six months of 2021. Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins

Aer Lingus lost €563 million last year amid the coronavirus pandemic, and recorded a €192 million loss for the first six months of 2021. Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins

 

Aer Lingus will formally meet representatives from the Fórsa trade union at the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) for a conciliation hearing on Monday, October 4th, it has been confirmed.

The move comes as the airline and employees seek to reach agreement on cost-saving proposals.

Both cabin crew and staff working in ground operations at Dublin Airport overwhelmingly rejected proposals by the carrier that include new work practices and lower pay scales for new entrants.

Workers are understood to be concerned about any workplace changes that are implemented being made permanent without any consideration for what happens should the sector bounce back.

Last week cabin crew workers represented by Fórsa voted 82 per cent against the airline’s proposals. Ground staff quickly followed suit, rejecting what it described as the “one-sided” cost-saving proposals, by a similar margin.

Tough measures

Aer Lingus lost €563 million last year amid the coronavirus pandemic, and recorded a €192 million loss for the first six months of 2021. It has threatened to unilaterally implement a range of tough measures if agreement can’t be reached with workers.

Aer Lingus reiterated on Wednesday the need to introduce cost reductions and work practice changes. It said the business is facing “serious challenges” arising from the Covid crisis.