Search form

menu menu
  • Daily & Weekly newsletters
  • Buy & download The Bulletin
  • Comment on our articles

Brussels Airlines December strike avoided

09:08 28/11/2023

A strike by Brussels Airlines cabin crew planned for the first week of December has been averted, following an agreement between management and unions.

Management has put a “serious proposal” on the table on which staff will be consulted in the course of next month, according to Olivier Van Camp of the BBTK union.

Cabin crew threatened to go on strike at the beginning of December to protest against what it described as the company's failure to comply with various collective labour agreements.

Notice was given in a joint strike action, but it soon became clear that some unions wanted to give management more room to negotiate.

Negotiations led to a lifting of the strike notice, said Van Camp – “an important gesture by the unions towards the company, as the festive season and the holiday period are fast approaching”.

Safeguarding December was important for the company because the holidays, traditionally a busy time for travel, are just around the corner.

The proposal currently on the table includes financial guarantees and agreements on working conditions, rest and a guaranteed income in the event of illness.

Tim Roelandt of the ACLVB union called the proposal “defensible” and some disagreement reportedly exists between the various unions in regards to the strength of management’s offer.

According to CNE's Didier Lebbe, the union “had no choice but to accept the proposals”, but spontaneous actions by staff cannot be ruled out.

Staff will be consulted during December and a conciliation meeting is scheduled with the Brussels Airlines pilots, who on Wednesday issued a strike notice for 11 December.

“We regret that it had to come to this, but are happy to provide clarity to our passengers and employees,” Brussels Airlines said in a statement.

“We are convinced that together we have found balanced and long-term solutions that offer our company and our people perspective and growth opportunities, as well as keeping our costs under control in a very competitive market.”

Written by Helen Lyons