Schiphol delays possible Sunday as security guard slowdown allowed

Schiphol Airport passengers
Passengers buying train tickets as travellers walk through Schiphol Airport. 25 Jan. 2015photo: Tasfoto / DepositPhotos

Schiphol Airport security workers will be allowed to walk off the job in rotation on Sunday, a court in Haarlem ruled on Friday. Airport officials and unionized private security workers faced off on the use of labor actions to voice the FNV union’s concerns about any new security firms contracted by the airport.

Starting at 7:30 a.m. half of the workers screening passengers and their hand luggage in any given line will stop working every 30 minutes. This will continue over the course of twelve hours.

Schiphol argued that the labor action could cause substantial issues, including flight delays.

After the ruling, FNV said passengers were unlikely to miss their flights if the show up at the airport on time, according to NOS.

Even without a worker slowdown, the airport predicted it will be a busy day for departures and arrivals. This could mean some extra waiting time at check-in counters, security screenings, passport control desks, and baggage claim belts.

The airport is expected to close new contracts with private security firms next year. The union is insisting the airport only work with companies that will abide by the existing collective bargaining agreement for their workers.

“You want well-trained and experienced security guards in a place like Schiphol. And that costs money,” wrote FNV representative Joost van Doesburg on the issue in June. “You can’t just get a Pinkpop security guard to work at the airport.”

Currently the airport works with three firms for security staffing, according to Nu.nl.

Handling over 71 million passengers per year, Schiphol is by far the largest airport in the Netherlands.

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