Schiphol security staff under too much pressure, says union

The implementation of the new only increased the workload and pressure on security staff at the airport, according to a study done by union FNV. This is leading to longer lines for customers and a massively increased risk of dangerous situations, the union says.

Despite the fact that the study was done during the relatively quiet winter season, 89 percent of the security staff members at Schiphol agreed that the workload increased since June last year. According to the union, this is because of a shortage in staff. 61 percent indicated that they have too work too long shifts and that their breaks are to short to recover.

According to the security staff, the working conditions - noise, extreme temperatures and extreme lighting - under the new system has a negative effect on their alertness. "The central security looks like something out of a science fiction movie", Simon Wever, a security guard at Schiphol, said. "But that's it: it's only appearance, because despite all the modern equipment, the noise, the lighting and the poor leadership make that we can not do our job. It looks very beautiful, but for us there is little to work with."

The union believes that the problems are the result of years of cutbacks on security at the airport and fierce competition between companies to keep the contract. "The security officers are faced with an increasing workload and growing health problems and declining alertness. This increases the risks when it comes to health and safety", the union writes.

The security staff is demanding job security with work under healthy conditions.