ETF ramps up pressure on ‘anti-union’ LOT

August 29, 2014

In a bid to ramp up the pressure on LOT Polish Airlines (LOT) over its unlawful sacking of Andrzej Jeżewski, vice-president of the ITF and ETF affiliated cabin crew union ZZPP, the European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF) has urged the voice of the European airline industry and Polish members of the European Parliament to use their influence.

In the letter sent on 25 August, ETF civil aviation secretary François Ballestero asked the chief executive of the Association of European Airlines (AEA), Mr Athar Husain Khan, to intervene with the management of LOT to establish good and fair industrial relations with the trade unions. Similar letters have been sent to 47 European Parliament members, reminding them of the role of trade unions in regaining freedom and sovereignty, as well as the country’s obligations as signatory of ILO conventions, and asking them intervene with the Polish government to resolve the issue.

Ballestero described the background to the dispute between the LOT management and the ZZPP: “The dismissal lacks proper justification and has been done unilaterally without the consent of the trade union (which is requested by Polish law). In addition, Andrzej was sacked during collective bargaining negotiations. We see this as an explicitly anti-union action. LOT Polish Airlines has a bad record of embarking on similar anti-union practices. In fact, over the last five years, the airline dismissed eight trade union leaders.”

He added that on 4 August, the ETF and ITF had jointly written to the president of LOT Polish Airlines, Sebastian Mikosz, demanding Jeżewski’s reinstatement. Ballestero wrote: “Unfortunately, the airline management rather preferred to keep silent about the issue and avoided the phone calls from the ETF office.”

He asked that the AEA and EP members urge the airline to reconsider its unnecessarily heavy-handed action and to participate in good faith in dialogue with the union. He additionally asked the Polish MEPs to write to the LOT president, the Polish Prime Minister and the Treasury Minister, and urged them to join the LabourStart protest letter campaign.

Add your voice to the thousands who have already expressed their support for the ZZPP, via the LabourStart campaign.

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