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    Brussels Airlines accused of social dumping

    Brussels Airlines is carrying out social dumping at the heart of the company. This point was proclaimed on Thursday by trade unions operating as a united grouping. The grouping says that the airline is outsourcing a series of flights, leading to non-compliance with social regulations. They are calling for dialogue and threatening strike action.

    Brussels Airlines is collaborating with the Irish company CityJet for some flights. This company further sub-contracts the cabin staff management function to its compatriot Nobox. Around twenty people may be affected.

    Olivier Van Camp of the Socialist trade union BBTK (Setca’s Flemish counterpart) regrets, “Workers were requiring a contract meeting Belgian legislation, but this has not happened.” He says Nobox is not respecting the Belgian minimum wage either. Working conditions are not clear and workers do not receive pay slips. Moreover, they earn less than their colleagues who are directly employed by Brussels Airlines.

    The situation had been noted some two months ago. However, the trade unions did not succeed in settling it, either with Nobox or Brussels Airlines. The Social Inspectorate was warned of the situation. The trade unions are calling for all parties to sit around the table to take control of the situation. They are threatening strike action if this does not happen.

    Brussels Airlines has confirmed that it has sub-contracted to CityJet a number of flights to several regional airports. CityJet has the appropriate aircraft in 100 locations, unlike Brussels Airlines. The company may not be able to influence CityJet’s employment policy.

    The company states however that “we have clearly stated during meetings, and in writing, that we expect that all social and other regulations in respect of our operations to be complied with.” It further says that the union demands will be taken to CityJet.

    Lars Andersen
    The Brussels Times