The summer holiday season at Barcelona-El Prat airport as well as at other airports in the Spanish state will be affected by a series of cabin crew strikes. To the action announced by Ryanair - whose first strike days will affect flights this weekend from Friday 24th to Sunday 26th - must now be added nine days of work stoppages by EasyJet, convened by the USO union, with the intention of unblocking the negotiation of their collective salary agreement. These EasyJet stoppages have been called for three blocks of three strike days each over the next few weeks, specifically: July 1st, 2nd and 3rd; July 15th,16th, and 17th; and July 29th, 30th and 31st, with duration of 24 hours on the affected days, and to apply at Barcelona-El Prat airport, and also at Malaga and Palma de Mallorca: three of the Spanish airports which receive most tourists in the summer season.
Specifically, the union has convened 450 EasyJet workers to strike, as representatives explained at a news conference on Tuesday. The secretary general of the USO at EasyJet Málaga, Miguel Galán, regretted that the airline had not shown any interest in negotiating the improvement of working conditions for the crew in Spain. "Currently, EasyJet crew members have a base salary of 950 euros, which is 850 euros less than the base salary in France or Germany," stated Galán. However, mediation was planned today through the SIMA foundation, with the union hoping to reach an agreement to move forward with negotiations.
The Ryanair strike
This is not the first strike called this holiday season. First came Ryanair, whose first strike days apply from this Friday to Sunday, coinciding with the Sant Joan holiday weekend in Catalonia and some other Spanish communities, an opportunity that many use for a trip away. The unions USO and Sitcpla have summoned cabin crew members of the airline in Spain to six days of 24-hour strikes: the three days of 24th, 25th and 26th June, followed by 30th June, 1st July and 2nd July - coinciding with the first "Operation Departure" days as many begin their summer holidays - to get the airline to resume negotiations on its first collective agreement for Spanish staff.
The USO trade union secretary for the Irish low-cost airline, Lidia Arasanz, stated that Ryanair is the only international airline in Spain without a collective agreement. The first collective agreement for Ryanair's cabin crew in Spain has been under negotiation for eight months with USO and Sitcpla, the only unions chosen by workers to negotiate their terms, Arasanz said.