News & Media

Government must step in to guarantee Aer Lingus jobs and routes in Cork and Shannon

31 July 2020

Statement by Duncan Smith TD
Party Whip and Spokesperson on Climate Action, Communications Networks and Transport.
Duncan Smith

The Government must step in to guarantee Aer Lingus jobs and routes in Cork and Shannon according to Labour Transport Spokesperson Duncan Smith.

Deputy Smith was speaking after it was revealed that Aer Lingus are considering compulsory redundancies and reviewing operations by closing their bases at Cork and Shannon due to losses incurred by the airline in the last three months.

Deputy Smith said:

“The Government and Transport Minister Eamon Ryan must step in to guarantee the future viability of Aer Lingus operations at Shannon and Cork.  They need to engage with Aer Lingus to protect jobs and routes by negotiating a support package with the airline.

 “If Aer Lingus decide to go down the route of compulsory redundancies or reduce conditions for aviation workers then they should be excluded by the Government from the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme.

“The Government need to extend the TWSS for aviation workers on the condition that Aer Lingus and other airlines will not make employees redundant on a compulsory basis or unilaterally impose any permanent reduction in terms for employment.

“It is a disgrace the way Aer Lingus has treated its staff and engaged with trade unions representing their crew. My thoughts are with the workers and their families who have been tossed aside again by the company and treated like an afterthought.

“Aer Lingus parent company IAG is one of the most cash rich companies in the aviation industry with over €6 billion of cash and €2.1 million of facilities in reserves. Aer Lingus have shown a total disregard for workers and their rights in favour of a race to the bottom in seeking to protect private profits over their workforce.

“Covid-19 has changed the nature of international travel and without Government support the viability of Cork and Shannon Airport is at risk and they must step in and guarantee Aer Lingus jobs and routes at these airports.