Ryanair employees forced to pay imposed drug test themselves

© Bart Noëth

A number of Ryanair employees, based at Charleroi Airport, Belgium were imposed to take a drug test in a hotel near the airport, announced trade unionist Didier Lebbe. “Not that we are against such kind of tests,” Lebbe said, “but these employees also had to pay €50 for the test.”

It’s up to an occupational physician to administer the test,” says Lebbe. “In this case, Ryanair employees based in Charleroi were summoned by Crewlink (a Ryanair subcontractor) to undergo testing at a hotel near Charleroi airport. They also had to pay 50 euros themselves for the test. The amount could be deducted from their next salary.”

According to an internal announcement, Crewlink threatened to de-roster employees who would refuse. And it asked people not to have the test taken during their working hours, but outside of them.

According to Lebbe, Crewlink is a “completely illegal” company in Belgium. “Not only is this company deemed no longer active in Belgium, it also has no right to be paid for those tests,” says the trade unionist.

Crewlink was active in Belgium in the past. Many Ryanair employees were employed by Crewlink, where they received worse conditions than Ryanair itself. In February 2019, the management and unions agreed that all Ryanair employees would receive a proper contract. Crewlink would stop its Belgian activities.

But according to Lebbe, Crewlink is still active in Belgium, and has even been supplying staff for Ryanair flights again for a few weeks.


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