By Aslıcan Orhan of the Turkish Civil Aviation Union – (Hava-İş) We’re applying strike in Turkish Airlines since May, 15th and it will be continue until the 24th term collective bargaining is signed. Official reason for strike is Turkish Airlines manag …

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By Aslıcan Orhan of the Turkish Civil Aviation Union – (Hava-İş)

We’re applying strike in Turkish Airlines since May, 15th and it will be continue until the 24th term collective bargaining is signed. Official reason for strike is Turkish Airlines management categorically refused our all demands for THY workers, including wage increases. Our other important demand is rest periods must comply with scientific criteria. Also they didn’t comply with court decisions on 305.

Our government owned 48% of Turkish Airlines. Before applying the strike, the Minister of Finance, Transportation, Maritime Affairs and Communications Minister and the Minister of Labour explicitly threatened Turkish Airlines workers with dismissal from work in their public statements. Minister Mehmet Şimşek has declared to the public that “Turkish Airlines is not alone. We will do what it is necessary. Turkish Airlines is very important for national security and tourism. We cannot accept disruption of flights”. His releases published in all Turkish newspapers and television channels.

The strikers urged THY’s management to reach an agreement with the union but were prevented on the first day from protesting at Istanbul’s Atatürk Airport because of the heavy police presence. “Encouraged to participate in the strike” rights that guaranteed by Article 65 of Law No. 6356 have been destroyed. Gas masks and tear gas tubes police forces ready to intervention created psychological pressure on the workers. On 16 May they gathered in front of the THY headquarters, and have said they will continue to protest there each day for the duration of the strike.

Company said its operations were continuing as planned with aircrafts leaving on time. But in order to minimize the disruption of its daily operations airline management is resorting to tactics that may undermine flight safety. Turkish Airlines management is using reduced number of cabin crew, which is less than international minimum requirements. They are sending Cabin crews sending duties without completed their education. They are disregarding the rules of regulation and they are flying with unqualified personnel in some of their flights. For example worker who has a certificate for 340, going duty with 777. Flights are not safe for the passengers and workers.

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For conducting the works, they are created heavy rule violation pressure on workers. Existing limitations is stretched as negative about creating exhaustion issues as flight duty periods, rest periods, days off. The company also threatens the workers by phone to put pressure on them. They’re calling workers who don’t come to work many times, and are even calling workers on their free days. Although against the law; they are hiring new employees during the strike.

For these situations we’ve appealed for the prevention of the illegal strike refraction on 15th, 20th and 29th May 2013 to Ministry of Labor and Social Security. But they didn’t take any action until 31th May. Expert report proved Turkish Airlines strike-breaking. According to this expert report the court decided to stop employer’s illegal operations on the interim injunction. But the employer still doesn’t comply with the court’s decision.

THY strike-breaking operations led up to discrimination. Instead of compromise with the union, employer applied unilaterally wage hike who are not attend the strike. Employer applied discrimination to the participants in strike with this decision. We’re calling Turkish Airlines management to abandon its uncompromising stance and settle this dispute.

On 4 March 2013, the ITF and Hava-İş lodged a joint complaint with the ILO (International Labour Organization) against both the Turkish government and Turkish Airlines. We prepared a letter campaign in German for BVB (Borutsia Dortmund Football Club) which sponsored by Turkish Airlines. Two German politicians and strikers sent letters to president of BVB. We’re going to organize leafleting campaign in airports in cities of other countries on September.

Also you can check our solidarity page at the International Transport Workers’ Federation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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