Trade union FNV agrees to wage moderation for KLM staff over the next five years, in exchange for the government support of 3.4 billion euros in loans and guarantees for the airline company. The union says it agrees with the package of agreements, on the condition that all personnel hand in wages with the same term.
According to the FNV, additional agreements have been made with KLM about the measures. For example, the trade union may remain at the table to discuss terms and conditions of employment and, if necessary, new agreements can be made in two years’ time about the details of the agreements with the government.
KLM confirms that the FNV has promised to sign the so-called commitment clause. Trade unions CNV, VNC, NVLT, VKP and De Unie have already done so. At the moment, only the VNV pilots’ union has not yet agreed to the conditions.
‘Now for the pilots’
“I am very happy that the FNV has taken responsibility. Now the pilots. I hope that they will soon come to that insight,” said Minister of Finance Wopke Hoekstra.
“To be honest, I am looking at this with some surprise. It is in the interest of the company and of all the people who work there that the pilots also come to that insight.”
“Of course we have had many conversations with KLM in the past period,” says VNV chairman Willem Schmid on TV program Jinek. “The intention was to have an agreement on 1 October in which the cutbacks would be realized. And that is very realistic. KLM is also having a hard time and that things have to be done there, and that the support of the government has conditions that we see and find it understandable. We have made agreements about this and we assumed that they also met the wishes of the government.
According to Schmid, the VNV delegation is working hard to resolve this, “because we are not waiting for this unrest either”.
On Friday it was announced that the Ministry of Finance does not think the agreements that KLM made with the unions last month go far enough. In that deal, the airline and all unions reached an agreement on cutbacks until 2022. The ministry wants staff to surrender wages for three more years, that is, during the entire period that the company receives support from the government.
The FNV says that the ministry overwhelmed them with this. “We had to sign at the cross within 24 hours and would no longer have a role at the negotiating table.” According to FNV campaign leader Joost van Doesburg, this role is guaranteed with the extra agreements.
Minister Hoekstra of Finance put the state aid on hold on Saturday, because pilot union VNV refused to agree to the five-year wage restraint. The FNV already announced that it wanted to adopt a constructive attitude. This morning VNV chairman Willem Schmid said he was willing to discuss wage moderation for the next five years.
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