Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Reporting on some promising signs as the Brussels Airport baggage handlers try to put a good face on their wild cat strike.

Brussels baggage handlers watch airline administrative staff load planes with customer suitcases.

I have just learned from a very reliable  airline source at 1615 hours today that my airline's administrative staff have been loading their own planes under the somewhat hostile eyes of wild catting Swissfort baggage handlers.  Today I was critical that my airline's phones were not answered. The reason they were on the tarmac making certain customers are served. I suggested that they place a message on their phones saying what they are doing and how their customers come first.

Apparently other airlines seeing the initiative of the Jet Airways staff are following suit. It is good to hear that practical solutions are now underway to clear the stranded passengers. Apparently talks are still underway to solve the problems of the wild cat strikers. These talks apparently have senior management  from the Swissfort company, government labour officials, the airport management and of course the striker's bargaining team.

In addition affected airlines are clearing their stranded passengers by routing them  to other airlines not affected by the strike. Not all airlines use Swissfort at Brussels Airport so this is possible.

What I find somewhat irritating is the fact that when I was in the airport on 14 May the Swissport strikers came out of the baggage handling areas and performed a noisy demonstration in the passenger terminal. It was irksome as a stranded passenger to have to put up with this type of stupid bravado. Some older passengers were shocked by this blatant disregard for the dilemma strikers had created by their wild cat strike actions. 

My source tells me that the baggage to be cleared from the first days of the strike down in the sorting area is large and chaotic. Hopefully now this silly strike ends and baggage handlers return to normal. However in the offing are strikes by air traffic controllers. The European labour unions need to get a dose of reality about the economic effects this kind of action has on tourism and business for the Euro Zone. 

© Copyright 2013, Tom Thorne, All rights reserved.

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