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Wednesday, August 3, 2016 - 07:30
KLM ground crew to strike Wednesday evening
A large part of KLM's ground crew will be striking at Schiphol from 7:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. on Wednesday, union FNV announced. During this time no luggage will be loaded or unloaded and no planes will be guided to the runway, NU.nl reports. According to FNV director Zakaria Boufangacha, the strike will affect and delay dozens of flights. The union expects that the majority of employees in the involved departments will participate. "We want to protect the passengers as much as possible, but because of the KLM management we've had enough", Boufangacha said. "The ball is in the hands of the KLM management, it can prevent even harsher actions with greater impact on the passengers." KLM and FNV have been struggling with a collective bargaining agreement for the ground crew for some time. On Tuesday the union refused a KLM invitation to discuss the matter. According to the union, this only makes sense if the airline is willing to make a better offer. FNV is demanding, among other things, a wage increase of 1 percent, with a minimum level of 75 euros per month, and no reduction in vacation and senior days. The union also wants KLM to offer more temps permanent contracts. On Tuesday KLM called it "incomprehensible and irresponsible" that FNV opted for another strike instead for a dialogue, as the other four unions did. "KLM will not bow before labor actions. Our customers, our employees and our company suffer under it. We do however choose for a dialogue", the company said in a statement. The airline filed a lawsuit to stop this strike. It appears in court on Wednesday afternoon.