Aer Lingus: More flights cancelled over pilot salary dispute

Image source, Getty Images

Image caption, Hundreds of Aer Lingus flights have been cancelled since pilots took action

The Irish Air Line Pilots’ Association (IALPA) has suspended strike action at Aer Lingus.

The IALPA board met on Wednesday and recommended that members approve a proposal from the Labor Court to increase pilots’ salaries by 17.75%.

Hundreds of flights have been cancelled so far due to last month’s strikes and a work-to-rule action that began two weeks ago as part of a long-running dispute over the pay of the association’s members.

On Monday, the Labor Court recommended a 17.75% pay increase for pilots over a four-year period.

The court advised that the increase be awarded as follows:

  • 2% as of January 1, 2023
  • 1.75% as of July 1, 2023
  • 2% as of October 1, 2023
  • 3.5% as of January 1, 2024
  • 1.5% as of October 1, 2024
  • 3% as of January 1, 2025
  • 3% as of January 1, 2026
  • 1% as of July 1, 2026

Following a meeting on Wednesday evening, the IALPA board decided to accept the recommendation of the Labour Court.

In a statement, IALPA said the pilot body “will immediately suspend ongoing work that has been in effect since June 26, pending the outcome of a vote.”

The union said a number of meetings with members will take place in the coming weeks before voting on the terms of the Labour Court’s recommendation.

Image caption, Captain Mark Tighe

Mark Tighe, president of IALPA, called the pay increase in the recommendation a “major victory for pilots.”

Aer Lingus said in a statement on Wednesday evening that it welcomed the “recommendation of Fórsa and IALPA to accept the recommendation of the Labour Court and the decision to end the strike”.

“We look forward to IALPA completing the voting process as quickly as possible.”

The Labor Court’s opinion also proposes abolishing pay scales for 2022, abolishing a crew agreement on rosters and summer leave, and terminating a debt owed by pilots to the company as part of that agreement.

Image caption, Pilots joined the strike in June and have been working to gain power for weeks

Flight cancellations

Aer Lingus announced on Wednesday that it is cancelling another 25 flights due to pilot strikes.

The cancellations apply for Monday, July 15 and Tuesday, July 16.

The airline expects to announce more cancellations on Thursday morning. Details of the cancelled flights can be found on its website.

Aer Lingus says customers whose flights have been cancelled will be contacted directly.

Travel agents are also contacted.

A statement said: “Customers affected by these latest cancellations will be given the opportunity to change their flights free of charge. They can also claim a refund or voucher.”

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