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ALPA offers support for Ryanair colleagues’ unionization efforts

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At the biannual meeting of the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA) Executive Board, pilot leaders voted unanimously to provide financial, logistical, and staff support for the recent unionization efforts by pilots at Europe’s Ryanair.
“ALPA is well-positioned to offer the vital support and resources needed for our colleagues in Europe who are fighting to protect their careers against a hostile management who threatens the livelihood not only of Ryanair pilots, but all pilots as well with their current business model,” said Capt. Tim Canoll, ALPA president. “We stand united with our brothers and sisters at Ryanair, and are prepared to provide them with the help and support they need to win this fight.”
Headquartered in Ireland with more than 80 pilot bases in countries throughout Europe and North Africa, the majority of Ryanair’s pilots are employed on short-term contracts through agencies rather than by Ryanair directly. These “atypical” employment models dramatically undermine pilots’ ability to organize and negotiate fair terms and conditions of employment.
“We remain steadfast in our opposition to airline operations that avoid the direct employment of pilots by utilizing brokers that act as employers or requiring pilots to create their own companies that then rent themselves out to the airline. If these atypical employment models are allowed to proliferate, they will ultimately erode high labor standards.”
ALPA’s Executive Board, composed of pilot leaders from each of the union’s 33 airlines, authorized providing the financial, logistical, and staff support necessary for Ryanair pilots to successfully bargain as a group on a trans-European basis.

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