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Relaunch Decree: The night of the long knives

AICALF, the association of Low Cost airlines, enters the Parliament to modify the Relaunch decree, while workers implore to stop the Social Dumping in the Italian Air Transport

At 11:30 pm last night, the Parliament Budget Committee was still working on the many amendments received by the Relaunch Decree, of which 14 to change article 203 of the Decree 19 may 2020, n. 34 (Relaunch Decree).

Art. 203 of the Relaunch Decree, renamed by workers ANTI DUMPING Decree provides, for the first time in the history of our country, a minimum wage protection to protect the work and professionalism of flight and cabin crew based in Italy, regardless of the nationality of the employer of reference.

According to the Government's plan, all air carriers and all companies that operate and employ personnel on the Italian territory should apply remuneration treatments to their employees that are not less than those minimums established by the National Collective Agreement for the sector.

Therefore, there is no mention of imposing the Alitalia CLA nor of obliging the airlines to pay particularly onerous remuneration, but there is a clear will to put a brake on the aggressive competition of some airlines, first of all Ryanair and Volotea, which base their profits on the reduction of operating costs linked to labor, often violating undisturbed workers' rights, blocked by the constant crisis in the sector.

In addition to the minimum remuneration treatment, Article 203 establishes that the National Contract is stipulated by the employers 'and trade unions' organizations which are comparatively more representative at national level and this specification is particularly important because it prevents the use of convenience unions to sign company collective agreements, practice prohibited but notoriously used in Italy, by some low cost carriers.

Article 203 also expressly protects precarious workers in Air Transport and those who are now hired with atypical contracts: pilots forced to open the VAT number for example or flight attendants hired by administration agencies based in other countries, embarked on the aircraft, but classified in Italy as non-flight personnel and therefore excluded from the specific protections provided by their actual profession.

But these low-cost companies do not want contractual ties to workers and they want to have legal access to economic aid like the companies controlled in Italy.

The lawyer Matteo Castioni, formerly legal of Ryanair, today President of Aicalf, regarding the Relaunch Decree says: "The rules contained in the relaunch decree are discriminatory".

«The national contract does not actually exist» «... And that contract reflects a business model that cannot be applied to low cost carriers».

Blue Air, easyJet, Norwegian, Ryanair, Volotea and Vueling, according to the lawyer Castioni, would all apply employment contracts under Italian law to their flight and cabin crew, but the workers deny this claim and send paper copies of their statements to President Conte and Parliament. contracts with highlight that their CLA’s are only partially Italian and are based  on regulations of other countries chosen by the employer.. A logo appears on all their letters bearing the words "SAY NO to social dumping in Aviation."

Meanwhile, while the low cost airlines are threatening to lay off thousands of workers and to interrupt part of their connections in Italy, if their requests are not granted by the Italian Parliament, they are restarting to fill the planes again: Ryanair announces that from July 1 it will restore the 40 -50% of its flights and EasyJet 50% as of June 15.

AA - 1230061

AVIONEWS - World Aeronautical Press Agency