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Dublin: 14 °C Tuesday 20 August, 2019
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Ryanair pilots in Ireland vote unanimously in favour of accepting collective agreement

The announcement was made by the Irish Airline Pilots’ Association, which represents some Ryanair pilots.

Image: Sasko Lazarov via RollingNews.ie

THE IRISH AIRLINE Pilots’ Association (IALPA) has announced that its Ryanair pilot members have voted unanimously in favour of accepting the collective agreement reached with the company last month. 

The proposed agreement, which covers base transfers, command upgrades and related seniority principles, is the result of mediated talks between elected representatives of Ryanair pilots in Ireland, supported by ICTU and Fórsa officials, and Ryanair management. 

In a statement to TheJournal.ie, Ryanair said that it welcomes “this overwhelming vote in favour of this agreement negotiated with Fórsa and our Irish pilots, with the assistance of mediator Kieran Mulvey”.

“We will now bring this agreement to our Board and will ask them to reconsider their decision to rebase six aircrafts away from Dublin this winter. We expect that the Board will meet to discuss this welcome development in the coming days.”

The announcement comes following months of numerous Ryanair pilots strikes.

The pilots had been seeking improved terms on issues including leave, promotion and base transfers. 

An agreement had been reached between pilots and Ryanair over the ongoing industrial dispute on 23 August. It came following a 22-hour negotiating session. 

IALPA members were then consulted on the agreement by way of secret ballot, which was launched on 24 August. 

In a statement, IALPA said that today’s result “shows that 100% of pilots believe this proposal to be the first step towards providing transparency and fairness for Ryanair pilots while also assisting Ryanair in recruiting and retaining pilots in the future”. 

The seniority agreements will iron out a number of issues, including: 

  • How seniority is determined. It will allow every pilot to be able to see their own position on the seniority list relation to every other pilot. 
  • How seniority will be used to determine a range of issues such as voluntary and involuntary base allocation and transfer, selection for command upgrade and selection for redundancy. 
  • It will allow pilots to bid for vacancies for promotion, base transfer and leave. 

A number of other agreements have been made between the union and Ryanair. 

IALPA said that although relations have been difficult in the past between the union and Ryanair, it is committed to building a constructive relationship with Ryanair based on mutual respect and a shared future, starting with the collective agreement on seniority. 

“While our members fully respect Ryanair’s operational model, they no longer accept the company’s highly problematic employment model,” Captain Joe May, spokesperson for IALPA said. 

“After decades of declining terms and conditions, pilots in Ryanair have now firmly found a unified voice. When pilots are treated fairly and transparently by an airline, they will be motivated to contribute to their airline’s success, stay at the company and make their career with the airline,” May said. 

May thanked Workplace Relations Director General Kieran Mulvey for his role in the talks, Ryanair for their participation in the mediation process, and Fórsa and ICTU officials. 

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