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Aer Lingus Staff 'Highly Likely' To Strike On St Patrick's Weekend

Published on Feb 24 2014 3:49 PM in General Industry

Aer Lingus Staff 'Highly Likely' To Strike On St Patrick's Weekend

SIPTU says a strike at Aer Lingus over St Patrick's weekend is now "highly likely".

The trade union has been locked in a pensions dispute with the airline and Dublin, Cork and Shannon airports. 

Unions had met on the weekend to talk about the €800 million hole in the Irish Airlines Superannuation Scheme, which involves over 4,200 Aer Lingus, DAA and Shannon Airport staff.

Head of SIPTU's Pension Advisory Committee Dermot O'Loughlin said it was likely the strike would take place two weeks from this Thursday - around March 13, at the start of the weekend before St Patrick's Day on the 17th.

The Minister for Transport, Leo Varadkar, has urged all sides to re-enter talks and avoid a strike.

"There is a solution … but it's going to require negotiations and a bit of give and take from both sides," he said.

"Strike action won't solve this problem. Renegotiation will."

The airline's CEO, Christoph Mueller, also echoed the sentiment that strike action will not help to settle the row, and said the airline cannot put off plans to improve their business any longer while they wait for it to be implemented.

Earlier today, Are Lingus announced an operating profit of €61.1 million for 2013, an 11.6% slide from the year previous. The company said that revenue for the full year was up 2.3% to €1.4 billion.

© 2014 - Hospitality Ireland Magazine by Enda Dowling

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