The negotiations continued late in the evening this Wednesday, December 16, 2020, but they could not lead to a compromise. A strike will take place these 18, 19 and 20 December 2020 at Brest airport. The legality of the notice had been challenged in summary proceedings by the management, citing a “Manifestly unlawful disorder […] taking into account the existence of negotiations ”. But the request was rejected by the Brest judicial court on Thursday, December 17.
According to the CGT-FO intersyndicale, around forty employees are on strike, all assigned to assistance (track, passage and traffic). However, “ all passengers who have booked a flight will be able to fly ”, assure Claude Arphexad, the new airport operations manager. Indeed, several flights, at least six, will leave from Quimper instead of Brest. Free shuttles will be set up, the schedules of which are to be found on the airport website.
Social dialogue has been blocked for months
On the first weekend of the Christmas holidays, this strike greatly complicated the organization of the airport, where around fifteen flights are scheduled each day against around 5 in normal times. For several months, social dialogue has known big blockages between management and unions.
A new company agreement as well as an agreement on long-term partial activity (APLD) must be found. Negotiating meetings were started, without success, with management and unions passing the buck on the responsibility for this failure.
“Traffic is divided by three”
“Currently, the main sticking point is the posting of schedules for shift agents. Previously we had visibility into our five month rest days. But there, they want to spend three or six weeks. It’s not acceptable “, believes Julien Le Ridant, FO union representative.
“In the past, we relied heavily on temporary workers. But with the Covid shock wave, we no longer have the means, replies the airport operations manager. The traffic is divided by three, we are at 38% compared to 2019. We therefore ask the agents to be able to replace themselves. “ No job cuts are planned to date, assures Claude Arphexad.
But it is the more global economic model envisaged in the long term for the airport that worries the unions. “We ask ourselves the question: why are they trying to break the tool? Is it with a view to a takeover, to sell it for less? “ asks Jacques Arnal, secretary general of FO in Finistère.