Social tensions at Brussels Airlines: the unions lodge a complaint with the Social Inspectorate for obstructing the right to strike

An action will also be brought before the labor court. The CNE and Setca unions denounce that the airline refuses that members of the staff go on strike as of this Wednesday, while an indefinite notice has been filed.

The union common front called on cabin crew members and pilots of Brussels Airlines to respect three days of strike, from Thursday to Saturday, in particular to protest against a workload deemed too high. As the protest movement kicks off tomorrow/Thursday, some staff – including union delegates – have been placed on long-haul flights, preventing them from being back in Belgium in time.

To be able to participate in the action, they went on strike this Wednesday, “which the management refused”, explains Mr. Lebbe. “She placed them on late flights”, replacing long-haul. A solution rejected by the trade unionist, who believes that the airline must accept that these workers are on strike as of Wednesday because the unions have filed an indefinite notice.

Brussels Airlines, however, has a completely different interpretation of the situation. “One person indicated they did not wish to fly long-haul today (Wednesday) so we ruled them out and offered them an alternative which they declined,” a spokeswoman said. the company. “She cannot be considered on strike, the strike starts tomorrow (Thursday),” she added.

Brussels Airlines ensures “always respect the right to strike”, continued the spokesperson. “We will never intimidate our staff, with whom we want to continue working,” she adds. “But we also demand respect for the right to work.”

“We did not notify the company that we were on strike on June 23, 24 and 25. We filed an indefinite strike notice and then we called on our affiliates” to respect these three days of strike, replies Didier Lebbe. “Anyone can strike provided they are covered by their union”, which is the case for this Wednesday, he judges.

A complaint has therefore been lodged with the Social Inspectorate and an action will be brought before the labor court, confirmed Mr. Lebbe, who denounces the actions of a company which is not “at its first attempt “. In December, at the approach of a 24-hour strike, she had sent a letter of formal notice to the unions urging them to cancel their call for a strike or risk making them bear the financial burden of such an action. , estimated at 2.5 million euros.

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