View Full Version : KLMuk/Buzz vote on strike action

13th Nov 2002, 08:20
BALPA members at KLMuk/Buzz Voted with a majority of over 90% for approving strike action in their dispute with the company over the terms of the merger with KLM cityhopper.

Stop Stop Stop
14th Nov 2002, 01:55
Company Council met with the Company at ACAS. Mr. Van Pallandt did not attend (why one asks).

Basically the company refused to move their stance on any of the issues raised (pay, transfer rights buzz to blue and yellow to blue).

Another meeting at ACAS on Monday. Company Council are not hopeful that the Company will take these negotiations seriously hence a strike is likely to be called on Monday. A press release will be issued on Monday and the strike dates etc. will be announced.

This is getting serious now. The members have voted overwhelmingly to secure the future by industrial action but STILL the company seem to not take it seriously.

See you on the picket line.

Aviation Trainer too
14th Nov 2002, 08:31
Can anybody enlighten us by explaining what the Buzz/UK offer was and what the pilots want? Makes it more interesting for us to watch.

14th Nov 2002, 11:02
Wouldn't it have been better to strike in the summer, when the charter airlines don't have any spare capacity. I don't want to be forced to strike-break!

15th Nov 2002, 18:24
So 'unwiseowl' , you don't want to be 'forced to strike break'.
Regretably it would seem you have chosen an appropriate login name. Integrity is a quality strike breakers do not possess.

Think carefully before making any decision.

15th Nov 2002, 19:06

You appear to have no knowledge of UK employment law: If my employer orders me to do the work I have no choice, other than become unemployed ! I would say that integrity is a quality those who choose to strike-break do not possess.

15th Nov 2002, 19:41
Hey forget him!

Most of us would get sick if rostered to do one of your flights.
Best of luck ...

15th Nov 2002, 19:56

You too seem to misunderstand: I support the Air UK/Buzz guys AND WISH THEM WELL I would loath having to strike break. Your "get sick idea" does have some merit but the bottom line is that the airline would manage to crew strike breaking flights and this is not the best time of year for a strike.

15th Nov 2002, 20:16
Can I ask a couple of serious questions just to put this in perspective in my own head?

(i) What's the typical salary of a Buzz/KLMuk captain? First officer?

(If you're shy, you don't have to be precise...ballpark figure will do)

(ii) I recall that strike threats suddenly vanished after 9/11 when pilots were being laid off left, right and centre. Is that still the case? How secure are the Buzz/KLMuk jobs?

Not being sarcastic here, just wondering.

15th Nov 2002, 20:57
I understand that their dispute is over the split of the workforce according to the brand they have been working under. KLM uk have removed basic rights of contract whilst at the same time dictating new terms of employment if pilots wish to keep these terms. KLM is a profitable company and only the UK pilots are being messed around the their dutch counterparts have just recieved a great pay conditions deal for doing exactly the same job. Its almost racism

15th Nov 2002, 21:52
I always understood that the Dutch pilots union was one of the stongest going, their position in this dispute could be the make-or-break issue?

Just have to hope that KLM haven't recently discovered that they have enough spare capacity to cover the Buzz/KLMuk flights themselves, (as winter approaches), hope you guys are not playing into their hands?

Don't talk yourself into unemployment - it's been done before.:(

A/P Disc
16th Nov 2002, 12:51
Interesting story going around. Seems that
Dutch pilot's questioned the Dutch Pilot's Union about
this deal with KLM Uk etc, and raised serious doubts about
the social aspects for the British pilots. The Dutch union said
that the British pilots were actually very happy with the deal
and did not want any amendments and so nothing was
done.Some Dutch guys feeling very p***** off.Not to
mention the British one's.

16th Nov 2002, 17:47

You are basicaly correct, I do not have much knowledge of UK labour law, but isn't strike action one of the basic rights (but last resort) of the industrial scene there ? If as you imply the company just has to say 'go to work' and you go, then the so-called strike action is a non event.

What about the current fire fighters strike in the UK. Surely if your premis is correct the government would have already said 'go to work' and hey presto, no strike.... also no negotiations, no contract update, no pay increases etc etc

There is something missing from your argument.


Sounds like you work for the same company but are not involved in union association, but you do accept the conditions that the unions negotiate. If so thats somewhat unprincipled isn't it ?

16th Nov 2002, 18:17
Blue Eagle

I believe the VNV (Dutch pilots union), have given our C.C. an assurance that they will not cover any 'dirty' routes. Therefore it does not matter how much spare capacity KLM have, because none of their pilots will touch our routes. Hopefully this will apply to all IFALPA pilots as this is an official action.

16th Nov 2002, 23:59

I do not work for KLMUK/BUZZ but a company which may well be used to cover their flights when they strike. If I were to refuse to operate those flights, I would be taking "secondary action", which is illegal in the UK, thanks to Mrs T.

If you feel inclined to apologise for jumping down my throut - feel free!!!

17th Nov 2002, 08:01
As someone who enjoys travelling with buzz, could I ask:

1. What precisely is the cause of the discontent?
2. Have representatives of those who are discontent held formal meetings with the employer?
3. Has independent industrial arbitration been sought?

17th Nov 2002, 11:15
Beagle and others. Please wait until the press release by BALPA tomorrow (Monday), until then you will only get bits of the story. In answer to your question though, yes, the pilot's representatives have been working with the company for several months now, but there seems to be little understanding of their grievances.

Unwiseowl. I believe that BALPA may ask other companies not to "strike-break". You are right that secondary action is illegal, but in my understanding this means you cannot drag your company into the dispute and refuse to work normally. However I believe that refusing to take action that will undermine an official strike, providing your union has approved it, is not illegal. I suspect BALPA will inform all companies concerned if it should come to this; there is still hope at the ACAS meeting tomorrow.

Aerobat. There was no vote on a split, and pilots did not vote in favour.

17th Nov 2002, 11:25
I have seen a couple of news items relating to this strike. Seems strange that only Buzz is mentioned. Do the press people on this site not know the KLM connection.

17th Nov 2002, 12:12
Herod - I hope you are right. GOOD LUCK.

17th Nov 2002, 14:34
OK situation now explained by your other post It was NOT clear in your initial post on which my reaction was based. The legacy of Mrs T lingers on, eh (will the current 'New Labour' change anything there ?) The info from 'Herod' also helped clear up the situation, so you've learnt something too. Sorry you were offended by my post.

mr lancaster
17th Nov 2002, 17:15
Unwiseowl, it seems to me that your name should be unsound Dodo. cause eventualy with a bit of luck people like you will hopefully become extinct !

17th Nov 2002, 22:23
I have seen a couple of news items relating to this strike. Seems strange that only Buzz is mentioned. Do the press people on this site not know the KLM connection.

Trevoro some of us understand the situation ;) I think the problem was that the Press Association story which ran on the wires the other day referred only to Buzz. PA feeds to just about every newsroom in the UK - most importantly the BBC - and sometimes oversights can get repeated. The disruption caused by a strike affecting KLMuk operations is much more significant from my point of view.

There was no vote on a split, and pilots did not vote in favour.

Herod there was no vote on a split, but pilots did vote in favour of strike action, did they not? Or is BALPA's own press release from Friday wrong?

ACAS talks tomorrow (Monday) may bring a solution; fingers crossed.

18th Nov 2002, 10:52
There has been no press release from BALPA;

This will only happen if the meeting with ACAS today (monday) breaks down with the company.

All BALPA has said to the press so far when questioned is " we can confirm we are in dispute with the company"

KLM and BUZZ are treating this seperate pilot workforce (KLMuk) with complete contempt, Mr F V Pallant is arrogant to the extreme, they would never get away with this at KLM mainline.

I believe Mr F V Pallant is modeling himself on M O' Leary, except this one will be far far worse. :mad:

18th Nov 2002, 11:35
Are you a member of BALPA? If you are, then I don't think you are required to cross a picket line. If not then you might like to consider changing your Name to:- SCAB
I would not cross your picket line!

18th Nov 2002, 11:59
Yes I am a member of BALPA! Please READ my previous posts: they mean exactly what they say. I hope very much that the KLMUK/BUZZ pilots do well out of the strike and would hate to be made to operate their flights. I will do everthing I can to, within the law, to avoid operating their flights. The fact is, I would be liable to dissmisal if I refused to operate any flight I'm rostered.

18th Nov 2002, 12:25
All BALPA has said to the press so far when questioned is " we can confirm we are in dispute with the company"

This is simply not true. I know it is untrue.

18th Nov 2002, 13:03
Thanks for your response.
What BALPA said to you is correct as I understand it. However, by tonight this dispute will move to it's logical conclusion if todays meeting is not used to negotiate a settlement. Dates and times for strikes will then be issued to the company and to the press. I assume a detailed list of the issues will also be provided.

19th Nov 2002, 09:08
Hope this is not premature.

On the Dutch Union site (VNV) it is being reported in a newsflash that Monday night the two parties reached agreement. The deal will be put by BALPA to its members for a vote. BALPA is advising a vote for the agreement. Details are not known as of this time, but subjects in the agreement cover: pensions, salaries, and redundancy protection.

Regards, O.

Stop Stop Stop
19th Nov 2002, 10:49
Interesting Otterman. It is amazing that the VNV have got wind of the results of the ACAS meeting before any of the BALPA members! There has been no communique from the company council at all as of this morning...our company website has had over fifty people browsing this morning obviously looking for something from BALPA. Maybe there will be something later.

If an agreement has been reached then I would cautiously say that is a good thing. I say cautiously because we have all heard rumours from KLC offices that have said if we go on strike then they will wind up the blue operation....yeah right...very difficult under law. We take it for what is is...a threat. I just hope that BALPA have not been taken in by this and are not going to give us some half baked improvement in the agreement with the sword of damocles waving over our head.

19th Nov 2002, 13:29
Otterman is right, they say there is now an agreement. So we are curious how the Tea and Biscuits will taste.

Greetz, QTA:confused:

19th Nov 2002, 13:57
No need for further talks today. there will be an announcement tonight (for some of you) or tomorrow (for the rest of us).

Stop Stop Stop
20th Nov 2002, 00:55
The strike is off...suspended at least pending approval of the renegotiated agreement which was completed late last night at ACAS.

Broadly speaking the agreement made was favourable to the pilots. A considerable percentage increase in the originally offered pay deal and no loss of transfer rights when transferring between brands....keeping all increments etc.

Many more details will follow...this is just a snippet from a discussion with a CC member. A full package will be issued with a vote but the CC are fully recommending the acceptance of this deal. All strike action is off until the deal is ratified by the members.

20th Nov 2002, 18:47
A.Viator.. shut up! Good luck to you in your pastures new but stop writing selfrighteous posts justifying to yourself why you left!
Things have got considerably worse since 99. So much so I personnally will quit the business if I cannot gain some normality in my life, i.e snatch more than three days in nine at home with my kid`s, who at the moment are growing up without me! And or retain my terms and conditions if I have to work my "butt off" for Buzz while risking loosing my pension for the next twenty plus years of pay negotiations.
Anyway the F-27 was a great aeroplane! I know, when the **** hit`s the fan I will be able to draw on the hand flying skill`s I learnt flying this old lady of the skies. Will you be able too? I suspect you are no more than an "autopilot two" aviator, God help the public, ha!

Long Haul
20th Nov 2002, 19:18
A.viator, the threat of strike did work; an agreement has been made! My congratulations to the KLMuk pilots, who were brave enough to stand up to what was clearly a ridiculous management position. I look forward to (in about five years time) flying with those of you who have chosen the mainline option.

20th Nov 2002, 19:23
Whoooa leftarmover

That's a bit strong isn't it? Go take a chill pill then re-read what A.Viator said. Lot of sense in what he says. Act in haste and repent in leisure. Sitting on the sidelines, without the stress it's easy for outsiders like us to see the wood for the trees, not so easy for you guys that are in the thick of it. I, like he does, sympathise with all concerned; his message was sympathetic but urging caution.

If you personally want to fall on your sword, that's up to you, but don't accept all of your peers to follow suit; they never do. Hopefully, you can find alternative gainful employment, as no doubt A.Viator did. That's his decision, and by the sounds of it, one which he doesn't regret. Hopefully, you will feel the same if you quit.

No-one really wins in these situations, just accept the fact that an airline is a corporate body which doesn't feel pain, humiliation, hurt or anything you can throw at it. Pilots, however, are mere mortals who do get hurt emotionally and physically and most importantly, financialy by what happens. The airline doesn't feel a thing emotionally, albeit you might by collective agreement cause it some financial discomfort; something it will weather in time.

I think an apology to A.Viator would be in order because your post was out of order. If you think I am being condescending, then I pity you, maybe you should find alternative employment. Pilots need to think rationally when faced with what might appear to be a confused and threatening situation. It is what you are trained to do.

A few spellos in the above, I notice. Forgive me if I don't edit to correct. The gist is there

Wet Power
20th Nov 2002, 22:52
Just for info but in 1999/2000, after the announcement, KLMuk lost about 25 % of it's pilot workforce to other operators.
This included a relatively large number of F100 Commanders under 40 years of age.
I would guess that very few are regretting their decision.

Incidentally, the impression I got was that the only people who had bad things to say about the F27 were the ones who couldn't fly it.


21st Nov 2002, 13:25
A.Viator and Horatio. Read what is written BEFORE you burst into print. As of Monday night the strike threat is suspended. Owing to the stand that the pilots took, the management has come up with a deal which (details still to come) appears to fulfil most of the grievances the pilots have. Now we can work together again, everyone has come out better in the long run.

21st Nov 2002, 19:27
Herod, may I respectfully suggest you do the same? I had read the information and I only burst into print, as you put it, because I felt that the response to A.viator's post was totally unwarranted, unprofessional and darn right rude!

As for the last post, what can I say?Hardly the balanced, reasoned, mature reactions one might expect from any aviation professional? That kind of attitude destroys any sympathy others may have in their collective plight, except most will recognise that these kind are always from the vocal minority that rarely represent the views of the silent majority. In their case, damned lucky they do still have a job, because with attitudes like that they would be lucky to get a job loading bags in the hold, let alone sitting in at the sharp end. Don't believe me?...go ask any Ops Director you know.

That's my last post on this thread, because I have better things to do with my time than fight with spoilt children.

21st Nov 2002, 21:03

You seem not to be taking in the information infront of you( a bit of a worry in this line of work). The point is that collective action in the last resort did achieve the required aim.

A massive amount of work to ensure a fair deal post split had been completely thown out, by a synical ceo triing to take advantage of weak crossboarder employment law. The only solution..... (fair, ethical or even common sense failed )cost him more money than he would save.

H...You seem to speak freely on subjects you obviously do not understand, not a trate to be encouraged in this profession.
As one of the (usually) silent majority, I'm afraid I have to agree with the previous assesment of your charicter.

Also don't know any real pilots who hate real aircraft...wrong line of work I'd say.

Stop Stop Stop
21st Nov 2002, 23:13
Hey Guys, take a chill pill.

We do take this all very seriously don't we? Can you not see that some posts are tongue in cheek?

Anyway much of the bitching over the last few posts would not have occurred had the relevant people read my post...the strike is off, niet, nada..

The new package is likely to be released to us tomorrow for a vote....the recomendation from the CC is that it is accepted and I suspect that it will be. The payrise could possibly be in our December pay packet we are told. Merry Christmas!

22nd Nov 2002, 10:36
The KLMuk pilots have been pushed around for years, and this was one push too far! Sometimes you have to stand and fight, and yes you might lose. Everyone ( well nearly ) at KLMuk chose to stand togeather, and with the support of the mainline pilots at KLM, fought our corner. We all knew the risks. We did not have a rediculous claim, just a fair one! And it looks like we have got a fair deal.
Leftarmover expressed exactly our sentiments on folks who have left, making smart**se comments like A.VIATOR'S and it is obvious that they do not wish us well, because if all comes good at Schiphol, then their decision to jump ship, might not be the one they thought they made!
I have best regards for the people that left Air uk, we wish them well, but those that chose to stay, might just have a good future too! KLM is one of the best airlines in the world, and you don't have to sell your soul and live in a dessert as a second class citizen either!!!

:D :D :p

22nd Nov 2002, 10:56
I would like to congratulate my colleagues at KLM UK for achieving a righteous settlement. As a KLM mainline pilot I can only say that I feel it is well deserved. In our union forum there was overwhelming support for your stance. I now hope that after all these years of uncertainty and downsizing you are all headed for better times. Looks like BUZZ will become a sizable airline in its own right. And the new KLC/KLC UK will be a major regional airline. Hope the hard feelings towards KLM will lessen over time, remember none of it was personal, and the group as a whole will come out of this chapter stronger. Regards, O.

ps. Thanks to the KLM UK colleagues who took time out to enlighten me on the issues involved, during the past six months.

22nd Nov 2002, 11:09
Nice one. Perhaps your management will treat you with more respect in future!

23rd Nov 2002, 16:05
I see buzz are striking over 2pc wage increase.
Does anyone know what they were actually demanding from the company which would satisfy the pilot workforce.:)

the boy John
23rd Nov 2002, 16:59
Well are they striking?

If so is it official?

If so when?

mr lancaster
24th Nov 2002, 12:14