Friday 23 March 2018

Traffic controllers to strike again

Aviation chiefs have criticised air traffic controllers as staff geared up for more strikes at the country's main airports.

Around 150 flights were grounded on Wednesday when Dublin, Cork and Shannon Airports were shut down for up to four hours.

As union officials met in Roscrea, Co Tipperary, to consider more strikes, the Irish Aviation Authority urged controllers to return to normal work.

The Impact union said more strikes may come if the IAA fails to reinstate 14 air traffic controllers suspended for refusing to adopt new working arrangements.

"Efforts are continuing behind the scenes to get this matter into the Labour Court as a matter of urgency," a union spokesman said.

The IAA said it had always been available to meet in the Labour Court, adding that any discussion would have to link the issues of pay increases, pension contributions, and work practices.

The authority also claimed staff were working-to-rule.

The strikes saw thousands of passengers face cancelled flights.

Business chiefs and politicians have rounded on the controllers, claiming they are holding the country to ransom and damaging its image overseas.

Taoiseach Brian Cowen and Transport Minister Noel Dempsey have appealed to both sides to resolve the dispute and use the Labour Court.

Press Association

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