28-Oct-2010 9:32 AM

Industrial action as French Assembly votes to raise pension age

France's Civil Aviation Authority (DGAC) announced (27-Oct-2010) strike action has been called for by some air traffic controllers within the framework of the national strike in France on 28-Oct-2010. The National Assembly voted by 177 votes to 151 to raise the pension age by two years with President Nicolas Sarkozy expecting to be in a position to sign off the bill by the middle of Nov-2010 (BBC News, 27-Oct-2010). Union leaders say they will pursue the protest in other ways. The DGAC will be limiting the number of flights operated by all airlines. On 28-Oct-2010, Air France plans to operate:

UK's London Luton Airport advised (27-Oct-2010) industrial action by French Air Traffic Control will take place from 17:00 on 27-Oct-2010 until 05:00 on 29-Oct-2010 and some services may be subject to delay or cancellation. [more - London Luton] [more - Belfast Airport]

Ryanair called (27-Oct-2010) for the EU Commission to remove the ‘right to strike’ from essential services such as ATC after it was forced to cancel another 200 flights ahead of yet more French ATC strikes which will close French airspace. It will operate additional services on 29-Oct-2010, 30-Oct-2010 and 31-Oct-2010 to/from Dublin and London Stansted to/from Alicante, Barcelona, Limoges, Malaga, Nice and Paris.

Ryanair: “European Governments bungled and failed to keep European skies open in April and May after a volcano thousands of miles from Europe erupted and now they are once again failing to keep Europe’s skies open as passengers and airlines face yet more travel disruption due to strikes. We once again call on the EU to remove the ‘right to strike’ for ATC as it is for other essential services like the police and fire services. Striking ATC controllers don’t care about consumers, they don’t care about passengers and they repeatedly strike because they know they can shut down Europe’s skies and hold EU Governments and passengers to ransom. The EU Commission must act now to end this ATC chaos.” Stephen McNamara, Head of Communications. [more]

Air Malta has also cancelled a number of services on 28-Oct-2010. [more - Air Malta]

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