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Monday, March 20, 2023

Public service: Verdi plans warning strikes at airports in North Rhine-Westphalia

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From the day care center to the airport: Verdi has announced extensive public service warning strikes for Monday in the Cologne/Bonn region. The two largest airports are also affected.

Verdi is expanding the warning strikes in the collective bargaining dispute for the federal and local public services. The service union called on all public employees in the greater Cologne, Bonn and Leverkusen area for Monday to go on an all-day warning strike. Among other things, there will be significant restrictions on local public transport in the region.

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Verdi also announced warning strikes for Monday at the two largest airports in North Rhine-Westphalia. At Cologne/Bonn Airport, the first groups of employees would start warning strikes in the night from Sunday to Monday, Verdi NRW announced on Friday morning. Warning strikes started shortly afterwards at Düsseldorf Airport. Due to the shift work, the warning strikes at the two airports ended in the night from Monday to Tuesday, as the union explained.

The background is the negotiations for employees in the public sector at the federal and municipal level as well as the nationwide negotiations for employees in aviation security. Collective bargaining is currently being conducted for both groups of employees. “With the strikes, the employees are putting pressure on the respective employers because no acceptable offer has been made in the previous negotiations in the public sector,” explained Andrea Becker, state department head at Verdi NRW.

Thousands of flight cancellations last week

Only last Friday, warning strikes by Verdi at seven German airports caused thousands of flight cancellations. Several airports had to stop regular passenger operations. In a message, Verdi NRW asked for the understanding of the passengers. In order to provide relief, the warning strikes were announced at an early stage. So travelers could fall back on other options.

The employers had presented an offer at the nationwide negotiations for employees in the federal and local governments in Potsdam on Thursday. Among other things, it includes a pay increase of five percent in two steps and one-off payments totaling 2,500 euros. However, the unions rejected the employers’ offer as completely inadequate. Verdi and the civil servants’ association dbb are demanding 10.5 percent more income, but at least 500 euros more per month. Collective bargaining for federal and local employees is scheduled to continue on March 27.

Source: Stern

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