48 flights cancelled as Hamburg Airport employees strike

The Local
The Local - [email protected] • 14 Mar, 2019 Updated Thu 14 Mar 2019 11:56 CEST
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Despite the school holidays, the union Verdi has announced a so-called 'warning strike' for Thursday at Hamburg Airport, affecting at least 30,000 passengers.

Baggage handlers, aircraft cleaners and bus drivers in the airport service downed their tools at 12.30pm. The strike was set to last until midnight.

SEE ALSO: How Thursday's bus strike in Berlin will affect you

The airport reacted with sharp criticism. "We consider the renewed strike irresponsible," said a spokeswoman, pointing out that Thursday is a popular travel day and that around 30,000 passengers will be affected.

During the strike period, 114 departures and 137 arrivals are scheduled.

At least 48 departures and arrivals will be cancelled, a spokeswoman told the Hamburger Abendsblatt on Thursday morning. The airport confirmed this around noon in a tweet.

These include connections to Munich and Mallorca.

"It affects both business travellers and families," the spokeswoman added.

The wage dispute concerns about 1000 employees in the ground handling services. The union Verdi is calling for a minimum wage of €12, or an increase of €1.24 per hour for the lowest paid group. 

Earlier, a special meeting before the next round of negotiations on March 20th had been held without result.
"We must send out another signal, but also take into account that Hamburg is still on holiday," Verdi negotiator Irene Hatzidimou told the the Hamburger Abendblatt.
She also did not rule out further strikes before the next round of negotiations. "Now anything is possible," she said.
Further cancellations could take place, depending on Thursday's strike participation numbers, she added. Travellers should arrive at the airport early, continue checking the status of their flights, and only carry hand luggage, she added.

On February 4th, an all-day warning strike had largely paralyzed the airport. Earlier in January, airport strikes around Germany, also organized by Verdi for higher pay, led to 640 flights being slashed. 

It comes during a wave of strike action across Germany, caused by separate disputes, and indicating the strength of the unions. On Thursday a strike – also organized by Verdi – by bus drivers in the capital Berlin was taking place.

SEE ALSO: Dozens of flights cancelled in Hamburg as ground staff strike

SEE ALSO: German airport strikes slashes over 640 flights



The Local 2019/03/14 11:56

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