THE Ryanair pilots based in Belgium decided again to strike on Thursday September 14 and Friday September 15announced the unions CNE and ACV Puls.
It will be their 4th strike in two months since the beginning of summer. The pilots have already struck on the weekends of July 15-16 and July 29-30 as well as August 14 and 15, on the occasion of the long Assumption weekend. The date of September 14 was not chosen at random, a general meeting of shareholders of the Irish low cost airline being planned for that day.
The pilots claim “le strict compliance with Belgian law, the payment of arrears and the opening of negotiations without prerequisites“. They are demanding the restoration of their salaries to pre-Covid levels after the cuts made (-50% for management, -10% for cabin crew and -20% for pilots) during the health crisis. They also point out problems concerning their rest time since Ryanair wishes to go against a collective labor agreement expiring in October 2024, which is why the strike notice for Belgian pilots runs until that moment.
As with previous movements by Ryanair pilots in Belgium, the strike will only affect Charleroi airport (Brussels South), since no Ryanair planes are anymore based at the Brussels-Zaventem airport. For the moment, no way out of the crisis is visible. On the one hand, the unions appeal to Prime Minister Alexander De Croo and the Walloon authorities. On the other hand, Ryanair is sticking to its positions, on the strength of its good results, and minimizing the impact of the social conflict on its activity by using pilots based in other countries.