The UGT and CCOO unions have announced this Friday four days of strike in Iberia’s handling (ground service), for January 5, 6, 7 and 8, a call that the company considers “unjustified” because it has made an “ambitious” offer for workers in this sector.
Last Wednesday, the plants suspended a previous strike announcement – which also extended to December 29 to 31 – to continue negotiating with the company, with the presence of the Ministry of Transport. This forum, however, has not reached any agreement and the unions have reactivated the protest for January 5 to 8.
The protest comes after Iberia lost the handling service at eight of the country’s main airports (Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Málaga, Alicante, Gran Canaria, Tenerife South, Ibiza and Bilbao), although it kept Madrid, in the contest resolved by Aena in September. This forces the workers at each of the airports where Iberia will stop operating to be subrogated to the winning companies in each location (Groundforce, from Globalia, Aviapartners and Menzies).
The unions do not want this subrogation because it means leaving the Iberia umbrella, although they are protected by the sector agreement, and they ask that Iberia do ‘autohandling’ for all the companies of the IAG group – to which it belongs along with British Airways, Vueling, Aer Lingus and Level-. Iberia has proposed creating a “hybrid” model owned by an IAG Group company, “even exploring the possibility of this vehicle being 100% owned by the group at airports where it made sense”, which would carry out the handling for all airlines in IAG in the eight airports, as explained in a note.
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