| 15.9°C Dublin

I'm terrified about losing my house as dispute goes on says Aer Lingus worker

A Dublin Aer Lingus cabin crew member has spoken of her fears that she might lose her home if the dispute continues much longer.

Rachel Briody (30) from Port-marnock, Dublin has worked with Aer Lingus for 11 years, but she says she is "frightened" that she won't be able to pay her mortgage if the dispute continues.

She is one of the remaining cabin crew members who are still on the Aer Lingus pay roll, but she expects she will disciplined in the next few days.

Rachel revealed the low morale among her colleagues while the dispute rumbles on.

"It's so stressful coming in every day and wondering if you're going to be approached before or after your flight. Morale is so low at the moment and everyone is so down and out."


"I did a flight today and I've one in the morning again, and I'll probably be met [by management] in the morning. I couldn't sleep last night and then I was on call, and I won't sleep again tonight."

"I came when I was 19. It's my career and I love dealing with the public but now it's so disheartening what's happening and the way we're being treated."

Rachel stressed that the cabin crew already work in difficult conditions, in a pressurised atmosphere.

"It can be very demanding. You're up early in the morning and you're just starving by the time you get a meal break -- we've always had it."

Cabin crew are saying they can't eat under the new roster arrangements, and they say they are expected to work for 10 hours without food or a break.

A total of 220 cabin crew have now refused to work the rosters and 200 of them have been struck off the payroll.

Rachel added: "Every eight weeks we get one weekend off, and that is now being taken from us and it's never been discussed with us.

"On Christmas Eve, I worked 14 hours that day, and there wasn't even any guarantee that I would get home. I spent half the day in an aircraft looking after passengers before the plane could land in France. And I got home in the early hours of Christmas morning."

Cabin crew went beyond their work to rule during the cold snap before Christmas to ensure that all passengers arrived in their destinations, Rachel added.


"Even for Christmas week, although we were still on a work to rule, we were willing to go beyond that. We do care about our passengers. We all genuinely love our job and dealing with passengers.

"Aer Lingus for years has always been known for safety, but it's being compromised because we're stressed.

"I know what I'm facing tomorrow. They're harassing the crew and it's a constant battle every day. Then you're asked to put on your Aer Lingus smile and get on with looking after the passengers.

"I'm frightened with the way we're being treated. We still go on our flights every day and care for the passengers. We're giving more than we can give."