Ryanair Loses Battle Over Pilots Strike

Ryanair Boeing 737-800
Boeing 737-800 | Ryanair

The High Court today heard Ryanair’s attempt to stop pilots employed by them in the UK from taking strike action as planned tomorrow and Friday (22nd and 23rd August)as well as from 2nd to 4th September.

Mrs Justice Lambert DBE rejected Ryanair’s various technical and legal arguments and agreed that BALPA’s industrial action ballot and procedures were lawful, and so the strike can proceed.

“BALPA has responded to their legal victory by offering an olive branch to Ryanair, a framework to allow constructive negotiations to take place and if agreed by Ryanair will avoid the need for strikes,” the union said in a statement.

Brian Strutton, BALPA General Secretary, said:

“Ryanair was foolish to bring this into the High Court rather than the negotiating room. We offered to meet Ryanair management at ACAS to negotiate a resolution, but instead, they attempted a legal bludgeon. That’s backfired.

“However, we are clear that we want to settle the dispute and bring about a change in Ryanair for the better.

“Pilots in Ryanair are seeking the same kind of policies and agreements that exist in other airlines – our demands are not unreasonable. We want to address issues like pensions; loss of licence insurance; maternity benefits; allowances; and harmonise pay across the UK in a fair, transparent, and consistent structure.

“We hope that Ryanair will take up our offer of a way forward this evening so we can call off this action. We urge Ryanair to change their attitude to dealing with us and adopt a constructive approach.

“In the event that Ryanair rejects our overture and therefore the action over the next two days does go ahead, we apologise to the passengers who will be affected. Such action could have been avoided if Ryanair adopts a different approach.”

Ryanair announced flights will go ahead as scheduled on Thursday and Friday. In a statement posted to Twitter, the airline said that it had been able to draft in enough pilots to operate a full schedule.

“Thanks to the great work and volunteerism of the vast majority of our UK based pilots, Ryanair now expects to operate its full schedule of flights to/from our UK airports”, the statement said.

The Irish low-cost airline accused captains of making “unreasonable pay demands” just weeks before Brexit.

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