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Aer Lingus stamps out free speech

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Aer Lingus stamps out free speech

Old 23rd Jan 2002, 16:41
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Exclamation Aer Lingus stamps out free speech

One of the 10 co-pilots on 30 day redundancy notice has been taken off all flying duties.

Her crime was to have a letter published in yesterday's Irish Times.

Perhaps every Aer Lingus OLP should write to the editor- there would be no need to strike. <img src="mad.gif" border="0">
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Old 23rd Jan 2002, 19:35
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The letter in the Irish Times says she was made redundant on the 18th of Jan, last Friday. how can the company then take her off flying duties if they don't employ her anymore? just wondering.
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Old 23rd Jan 2002, 19:47
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The 10 were given thirty days notice of redundancy on the 18th. They have all been trying to fly their butts off to get themselves more hours before the hammer falls.. .She bravely replied to a nasty, ill informed and begrudging letter in the Irish Times. Her reply was well drafted and set the record straight.. .Aer Lingus management today responded by grounding her. Another warning to the rest of the group to shut up or fsace the consequences.

What a grubby little bunch of ******s they are. <img src="mad.gif" border="0">
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Old 23rd Jan 2002, 20:04
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That's the sort of thing that gives airline management a bad name. They expect staff to be loyal to the company, but show no loyalty in return.

No wonder there is such antipathy betwixt the two sides right accross the board.

Doc C.
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Old 23rd Jan 2002, 20:11
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Idunno,. .gotcha 30 days notice.. .Letter seemed well written and to the point. Don't see the point in grounding her if they are going to 'let her go' anyway, hardly good publicity, or even a half decent way to treat staff. Interesting to see if there is a reply in the IT tomorrow.. .Fos <img src="rolleyes.gif" border="0">
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Old 23rd Jan 2002, 20:14
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For the record :

Sir - In response to Gerard Reynolds (January 17th) I would like to point out several factors involved in the redundancies of pilots at Aer Lingus of which he is clearly ignorant.. .I am one of the 10 pilots made redundant as of January 18th and I wholly agree with Mr Reynolds when he says that business leaders should be held accountable for their actions.. .However, he then continues on to comment about the ebb and flow of economics and asks if Aer Lingus pilots are more entitled to earn a living than those in the IT sector. I would like his response to the following:. .Are his colleagues owed more than 1,600 weeks of leave? Are they the lowest paid in their industry? Did they forfeit a 21 per cent pay increase on the condition that there were no involuntary redundancies?. .Did they establish a binding agreement with their company which states that several conditions must be met before involuntary redundancies are sought only to be broken by the company with the events of the last two days?. .Did they accept a pay freeze for the next two years to alleviate some of the financial burden on the company? Were their specific departments singled out to receive a considerably less attractive redundancy package than other departments - which subsequently resulted in more senior members not availing of the offer despite a desire to? I foresee the answers to these questions will be no.. .You can only give so much; then comes the time to take a stand. The pilot body is a group of professionals committed to the future of Aer Lingus. We were the only group in the company not to strike last year and we have voted in the survival plan that, we hope, will secure Aer Lingus as a successful, profitable international carrier.. .Industrial action is not desirable. It will not be taken on a "whim", as Mr Reynolds suggests. We do not want to disrupt passengers but we are being backed into a corner.. .To Mr Reynolds I would say: please research the subject before jumping to conclusions. - Yours, etc.,. .JILL MACDONALD, (Aer Lingus first officer), Drumcondra, Dublin 9.. . <img src="mad.gif" border="0">
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Old 23rd Jan 2002, 20:25
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Sounds more like she is having a go at Mr Reynolds, with undertones about dissatisfaction with Aer Lingus management. . .Anyone know Mr Reynolds employer / position? Not director of IT at Aer Lingus perchance?
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Old 23rd Jan 2002, 21:14
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If I was to write to a paper and referenced my employers, they would start misconduct proceedings. I know of no company in the industry I am in (IT) that would allow its employees to enter into discussions with the press about the company.
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Old 23rd Jan 2002, 21:32
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might have been a good move to have 'address supplied' maybe
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Old 23rd Jan 2002, 22:07
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She probably thought there was nothing else they could do to her since they'd already sacked her.

Never underestimate the vindictiveness of an Aer Lingus manager. . .Fatal mistake.
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Old 23rd Jan 2002, 22:30
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Unhappy

The sooner the old school autocratic managers go from Irish companies, the better!!!!

Send the lot of 'em back to secondary school business class I say!!!!!

<img src="eek.gif" border="0"> <img src="eek.gif" border="0"> <img src="mad.gif" border="0"> <img src="mad.gif" border="0"> <img src="rolleyes.gif" border="0"> <img src="rolleyes.gif" border="0"> <img src="frown.gif" border="0"> <img src="frown.gif" border="0">
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Old 24th Jan 2002, 15:41
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From today's Irish Times;

"PILOTS AT AER LINGUS BALLOT FOR ACTION . .By Padraig Yeates, Industry and Employment Correspondent

Aer Lingus pilots began balloting for industrial action last night as part of their campaign to prevent the company introducing compulsory redundancies. The company wants to remove 80 pilots - 20 captains and 60 co-pilots - from the payroll as part of its plans to cut operating costs and shed 2,026 jobs overall. Ten pilots have already been served with 30-day compulsory redundancy notice.

Mr Michael Landers, assistant general secretary of IMPACT, said he was very pleased with the capacity attendance at last night's meeting. "It is indicative of the feeling among pilots that they have been singled out for compulsory redundancy."

One of the pilots who has already received her redundancy notice, Ms Jill McDonald, was taken off the roster on Tuesday after a letter she wrote was published in that day's Irish Times. She asked a previous correspondent: "Are his colleagues owed more than 1,600 weeks of leave? Are they the lowest paid in their industry? Did they forfeit a 21 per cent pay increase on the condition that there were no involuntary redundancies? Did they establish a binding agreement with their company which states that several conditions must be met before involuntary redundancies are sought, only to be broken by the company?" She added that, "You can only give so much; then comes the time to take a stand."

Yesterday, the Aer Lingus director of corporate affairs, Mr Dan Loughrey, said all 10 pilots served with compulsory redundancy notice had been told at the time that, if they suffered stress as a result, they could stand themselves down. Ms MacDonald had given interviews to the broadcast media as well as writing to The Irish Times expressing her concerns and her manager had decided to "take her off rostered duty to establish if she was okay".

It was not a suspension, Mr Loughrey stressed, and "it was not to do with the media per se, but it was about establishing a person's state of mind and ability to fly aircraft safely".

The action has, however, heightened tensions between pilots and the company, although no immediate industrial action is anticipated. The strike ballot will conclude next Thursday. Even if it is in favour of action, at least one week's strike notice would be served."

. .Problem is, the duty she was taken off yesterday was a groundschool day- safety implications?! The Chief Pilot has now changed his mind apparently, although it came from Wee Willie in the first place.

. . The Irish Times
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Old 25th Jan 2002, 06:02
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I have been following this thread with some dismay, the pilot-management rancor reflected in some of the remarks is dismal to say the least.

If I have read Jill McDonald’s statements correctly, there is in existence a binding contract signed by all parties which prevents management from implementing voluntary redundancies, in exchange for pay freezes. If this is indeed the case, Aer Lingus management has taken the first steps down a precipitous legal and public relations path from which it will not emerge unscathed. Unwise, blindly arrogant in the extreme, a most worrying symptom of the incipient death spiral.

It is widely accepted that companies must expand and contract in response to changing market conditions. In this part of the world, such as it is, those pilots at the bottom of the seniority list are furloughed, they keep their individual seniority numbers and are hired back into the company based on that seniority as conditions improve. A small few companies have even shown concern to those particular employees by allowing them to keep their travel benefits, something which costs the company nothing, and contributes immeasurably in mitigating the painful loss of work and pay by leaving the ex-employee with a sense of belonging and hope for the future.

Management, in collusion with the senior pilot group (as evidenced by the deafening silence from same), seem to be leaving themselves the option to selectively rehire, which if true would amount to nothing more than a blatantly transparent, shameful and sycophantic ‘house-cleaning’ operation, one which already appears to be causing animosity of the most willful sort. Is anyone really surprised she went public with this?

When you fight for yourself, Jill, you fight for all of us. Courage, M’Lady, cowards are a dime a dozen, the race goes to the brave.
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Old 25th Jan 2002, 06:25
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Two points.

1) Taking Jill off flying duties is harsh because faced with low hours and no job in 10 days time she needs/wants all the hours on type she can get to help her find work elsewhere.

2) I know Jill because she was an Aer Lingus student in Jerez when I was an instructor there. She is a humorous, polite, intelligent and reserved young lady of excellent character. My sympathies lie with her out of both instinct and intellect...

Not my job as a Moderator to pass comment but this seemed pertinent, if mildly, partisan.

Good luck with your next job Jill,

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