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RYANAIR

German unions call for strike against Ryanair Wednesday

Unions representing pilots and cabin crew of Irish no-frills airline Ryanair In Germany have called for a strike on Wednesday over better pay and working conditions.

German unions call for strike against Ryanair Wednesday
Ryanair planes in Belgium. Photo: DPA

The pilots' Cockpit union said in a statement Monday that they have been  demanding these improvements “for months”. 

Despite the “clear signal” given during the strikes in August, “the negotiations remain deadlocked. We demand finally some solutions,” said Ingolf Schumacher, in charge of salary negotiations for the union.

The strike, which is expected to last 24 hours, would involve some 400 Ryanair pilots and co-pilots in Germany.

About 1,000 flight personnel in the country have also called for a work stoppage on Wednesday.

“The salaries are so low they do not guarantee a sufficient living wage,” said Christine Behle of the German services union in a separate statement. 

In August, Ryanair, which carries some 130 million passengers annually, had 
to cancel 250 flights to and from Germany after the German pilots joined a 
pan-Europe strike against the airline.

Meanwhile, Ryanair reached agreements with personnel in Ireland and Italy, 
which Germany's Cockpit union considers insufficient.

While the carrier is for the first time recognising unions across Europe that represent its pilots and cabin crew, staff are unhappy that improvements have yet to be made on pay and other conditions.

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CHRISTMAS

Strikes hit Amazon in Germany in the run up to Christmas

Around 2,500 Amazon employees at seven sites across Germany were on strike on Tuesday and unions warned stoppages could continue up to Christmas.

Amazon parcel in factory
A parcel rolls along a conveyor belt at an Amazon packing facility in Gera, Thuringia. Photo: picture alliance/dpa/dpa-Zentralbild | Bodo Schackow

The strikes at so-called “fulfilment” centres, where Amazon prepares packages before delivery, began in two locations on Monday.

The Verdi union is calling on Amazon for an “immediate” salary increase of three percent this year, followed by a further 1.7 percent next year, in line with a collective agreement for the retail sector, to which the e-commerce giant does not adhere.

Amazon could not continue to “refuse wage increases that other companies in the sector pay”, Verdi retail head Orhan Akman said in a statement Monday.

Amazon, which operates 17 centres in Germany, argues it is a logistics company, a sector in which the terms of work are considered to be less burdensome for the employer.

Amazon said it did not expect the strike to have an impact on clients.

However, a Verdi spokesman said the stoppage could cause disruption, particularly in Amazon’s rapid-delivery “Prime” offering.

Strikes were likely to continue “until the end of the year”, the spokesman said, impacting on the busy Christmas shopping period.

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Verdi, which first called for strikes at Amazon in May 2013, organised demonstrations outside the fulfilment centres on Tuesday to protest poor working conditions.

Amazon — which has seen its business boom during the coronavirus pandemic as consumers increasingly shopped online — announced in September that it would open eight new centres in Germany, creating 3,000 jobs by 2022.

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