European campaign on ground handling

March 27, 2011


The European Transport Workers’ Federation, the ITF’s European arm, is standing up for ground handling jobs following the launch of a new campaign this week.

The campaign, which was launched on 22 March, and which operates under the slogan: “Stop, don’t mess with ground handling jobs”, aims to highlight the importance of job security and quality employment for ground handling workers in the European aviation sector. The initiative also sets out to influence decisions taken by the European Commission, which is in the process of drafting a new directive on ground handling for publication in September.

The campaign will last for between 18 and 24 months and will initially focus on raising awareness of the issue among affiliates and shop stewards through leaflet distribution and information meetings at workplaces. It may also be escalated if necessary.

On 21 March, Brendan Gold, president of the ETF civil aviation section, Enrique Carmona, chairman of the ground staff committee and François Ballestero, ETF political secretary for civil aviation met with European commissioner Siim Kallas to outline growing tension among ground handling workers in Europe; they are particularly concerned about social aspects of their work, such as a lack of job security and the downgrading of their jobs.

Francois Ballestero commented: “We clearly highlighted that the current directive does not fulfil the needs of today’s ground handling business and the social challenges that have arisen in the past 15 years since its implementation. The only possible way forward is to revise the directive substantially so that it addresses social and quality issues. The ETF will take a stand against any proposal that does not meet these social requests.”

Visit where you will find campaign material, a video and leaflets in 14 European Union languages, as well as other documents.

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