First ever pilot strike likely at Norwegian

Norwegian may get its first ever strike by pilots on Sunday
Norwegian may get its first ever strike by pilots on Sunday, if negotiations with unions fail. A solution to a dispute in Norway over wages and employment rights has not been found, despite more than three months of talks. Swedish pilots say they would support their colleagues in Norway with a sympathy strike.
Norwegian wants to force through a big cut in wages and employment rights for its Scandinavian pilots, unions argue. The airline says this is the only way it can continue to compete. Chief executive Bjørn Kjos has no intention to compromise, thinks Halvor Vatnar, leader of the Norwegian Pilot Union.
“Our experience over the past four years is that Kjos wants to get rid us, and that he is running a union busting strategy. He does not want permanently employed pilots but hired pilots on obscene terms,” Vatnar says. “The overarching point is that the cost of pilots in Norway, Sweden and Denmark is too high. It is required that our terms dramatically worsen if we intend to continue on the adventure that has been Norwegian.”
Lasse Sandakerveien-Nielsen, a press officer for Norwegian, insists the airline wants to keep its pilots on a full-time basis but that its recent heavy loss shows the pilots’ current working conditions are not sustainable.
The Local
[photo courtesy Norwegian]

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