Ryanair is convicted of violating the right to strike through threats and the promotion of scab


Add up and go on. New conviction of the National Court to Ryanair, in this case, for violating the right to strike of its workers and the freedom of association of USO and Sitcpla. The events refer to the strikes of September 2019 against the closures of several Spanish bases. The magistrates conclude that several of the multinational’s practices exceeded and limited the right to strike, for example, “threatening undue wage losses” for workers, “hyper-protecting access to work and not participating in the strike” and “promoting scab “. The court condemns Ryanair to compensate the unions calling for the strikes with compensation of 30,000 euros each.

Ryanair sends a survey to its cabin crew to say if they will support the strike

Ryanair sends a survey to its cabin crew to say if they will support the strike

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This is clear from the sentence, dated March 17, that elDiario.es has been able to consult and that it joins another very recent one from the same court. The National Court invalidated the outsourcing of Ryanair crew members through their employment agencies by concluding that there is an illegal transfer of workers. Ryanair has announced that it will appeal the ruling to the Supreme Court, something that it can also do with this other sentence.

What already did the Labor Inspection, the magistrates review several of the actions of the multinational in the days before the strikes, as well as during and after the strike. Among those that directly limited the right to strike of their workforce are practices such as a survey in which the management tried to find out who intended to go to work or not, as well as a statement in which the company assumed that there could be alternating and coercion of the pickets during the days of the strike. The company offered workers who wanted to work “payment for parking and the presence of ‘protective counter pickets.” Ryanair also wrote to the cabin crew asking for volunteers to work on those days.

Ryanair withdrew a monthly bonus from strikers

For those who wanted to exercise their right to strike, the company management previously threatened “a pay loss greater than that equivalent to the discount on the strike day.” Ryanair informed the workers that, in addition to subtracting their daily wage, it would take away the productivity bonus of the month, of 150 euros. “Such a threat discourages the strike by using an undue spring: wage loss greater than the discount for the day not worked,” the ruling states.

Ryanair complied with its warning and did not pay this supplement for the entire month to those workers who went on strike. The magistrates have also condemned the Irish airline to return to the workers this monthly bonus, minus 5 euros a day for the days they went on strike.

In addition, the ruling highlights that the low-cost airline exceeded its power of direction and organization, which “is legitimately constrained by the impact caused by the strike.” Something that Ryanair tried to get around. It did not inform the organizing unions of the flights or the personnel affected by the minimum services and tried to influence the exercise of the right to strike to ensure “the presence of even more workers than those necessary to provide the minimum services and have they with wide flexibility in order to minimize the negative consequences of the strike in their productive activity “.

60,000 euros for the convening unions

The court concludes that Ryanair’s attitude “not only affects the exercise of the right to strike but also attacks the right to freedom of association of the organizing organizations.” The magistrates recall that “the organizers of the strike are trade union organizations and the strike is a basic instrument for the exercise of trade union activity, thereby attending to the purpose that constitutionally legitimizes them, the defense of the interests of the workers, if an attack is made against the exercise of the strike is necessarily undermining the right to freedom of association “.

On this occasion, the sentence ends with the imposition of compensation for moral damages for USO and Sitcpla of 60,000 euros in total. Given the high number of workers affected, “the intensity and variety of the measures contrary to fundamental rights adopted by the defendants”, the judges impose compensation for moral damages of 30,000 euros for each claimant union.

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