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EasyJet cabin staff in Spain will go on strike for nine days during the peak of the summer vacation season in July,
Unions have asked EasyJet cabin crew members working in Spain to strike for nine days in July as part of a pay dispute. As airlines struggle to meet demand following the relaxation of Covid restrictions, the walkout will increase passenger issues. EasyJet has already had to cancel thousands of flights this summer due to labor shortages at Gatwick.
Meanwhile, Heathrow Airport is still working to remove the massive amounts of baggage that forced 5,000 flights to be canceled on Monday. Since February, EasyJet and the Spanish union USO have been in talks about cabin staff compensation, but the union claims the talks have reached a “deadlock.”
The flight attendants of the low-cost carrier will strike in three phases over the course of the month: July 1 to 3, July 15 to 17, and July 29 to 31. The planned walkouts will add to the pandemonium during a holiday season that already appears to be wreaking havoc.
At the end of last week, Gatwick Airport cut a substantial portion of its schedule, and Ryanair crews in five European nations are preparing strike action. In addition, EasyJet announced on Monday that it would cancel flights between July and September after Gatwick Airport’s announcement that it would limit the number of flights during the peak summer season due to staffing shortages.
The Spanish USO union organized the EasyJet strike. This comes only one day after the low-cost carrier revealed that it would be removing 11,000 flights from its summer schedule. In addition, the union is requesting a 40 percent increase in the base wage for low-income cabin workers.
The basic wage for EasyJet’s Spanish crew, according to the union, is €950 per month (£816), minus bonuses and supplementary pay.
Mr. Galan said, however, that the union, which claims to represent 80 percent of the 450 EasyJet employees in Spain, is hopeful that during a meeting with management on Tuesday, an agreement may be reached to avoid the strikes.
EasyJet’s representative has been contacted for comment.
According to the European Trade Union Institute, striking is a fundamental right in Spain, and strikes affecting a single company can be initiated by unions, worker representatives, or employees themselves.
UK holidaymakers have seen flight delays in recent months as airlines and airports struggle to cope with increased demand as a result of Covid lockdowns that led to job layoffs.
Hundreds of crew members will refuse to work for three 72-hour periods if an agreement cannot be reached before the deadlines. Bases in Barcelona, Málaga, and Palma are all expected to be affected.
On Monday, some 30 planes carrying up to 5,000 people were grounded at Heathrow Airport due to baggage-handling concerns. However, the BBC estimates the backlog to be in the thousands of suitcases was “clearing up” on Tuesday, according to Heathrow.
According to a spokeswoman, the baggage system has been “back up and running” since the weekend, and “bags are being sent to their destinations.”