Early this morning, Brussels Airlines cabin crew and pilots, joined by union members representing them, gathered near Brussels Airport to protest against the heavy duty rosters and the lack of rest times at home. The pilots also object that their “cafetaria plan” has not been adjusted to the cost of living.
At around 10:00, everybody walked towards b.house – Brussels Airlines’ headquarters – to show their discontent.
The unions demand structural measures to ensure the future of the company and its employees. The three-day strike lies within the framework of the social conflict which opposes them to the management of the airline.
Brussels Airlines said that it already had to cancel 315 flights during the next three days affecting around 40,000 passengers. For most of the passengers, a solution has been found on partner airlines within the Lufthansa group or with other airlines, Brussels Airlines spokesperson Maaike Andries explained, adding that “for some passengers, a solution could not be found, they will get a refund.”
The management of Brussels Airlines acknowledged the high workload and said to lower the work pressure for its staff by cancelling flights and by hiring additional staff, but stated that the financial results (a loss of € 60 million in the first quarter of 2022) does not allow to talk about indexations.
Meanwhile, both sides are in the trenches. The financial situation does not leave much flexibility, hopefully a workable solution for both parties will soon be found.