Ex-Ryanair cabin crew member wins €16,000 redundancy payment dispute with airline

Carrier is appealing decision which will be heard in the Labour Court

At the hearing, Ryanair argued that instead of making Jovita Jocinate’s position redundant, it was in a position to offer her continued employment in the London Stansted base.

At the hearing, Ryanair argued that instead of making Jovita Jocinate’s position redundant, it was in a position to offer her continued employment in the London Stansted base.

 

A former Ryanair cabin crew member has won her dispute with the airline over a €16,000 redundancy payment.

The carrier was told by Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) adjudicator Breiffni O’Neill to pay Jovita Jocinate her statutory redundancy payment.

Ms Jocinate had worked for Ryanair since 2007 but in May, 2020, she was told the airline was shutting its base at Kaunas in Lithuania where she worked, due to Covid-19.

In her testimony to the WRC, Ms Jocinate argued that in order to avoid a redundancy payment Ryanair offered her alternative employment at its Stansted base in the UK, more 1,600km (1,000 miles) from her home in Lithuania.

Ms Jocinate – who represented herself at the two-day WRC remote hearing – explained the Stansted offer was unacceptable because she could no longer live in the city where she had settled and would have to move to a country that was a considerable distance away, while pregnant and already having a two-year-old child.

She said as a result of Ryanair’s refusal to reconsider, she had no choice but to sign a new contract with Ryanair subsidiary, Buzz, and be based out of Kaunas because she had to support her small child and ensure she would get her maternity benefit later on when she had her baby.

Findings

In his findings, Mr O’Neill found that it was “unreasonable” of Ryanair to require Ms Jocinaite to move to London.

At the hearing, Ryanair argued that instead of making Ms Jocinate’s position redundant, Ryanair was in a position to offer her continued employment in the London Stansted base.

Ryanair stated it advised Ms Jocinate the transfer would be effective July 1st, 2020, in accordance with the mobility clause in the contract of employment.

Ryanair said Ms Jocinate chose to end her employment and start with a new third party despite it being open to her to remain in their employment and based in Stansted.

A spokesman for Ryanair said on Tuesday the company is appealing the decision. This will be heard at the Labour Court at a later date.