Last updated: 08:00 PM ET, Sat May 23 2015

Alitalia Pilots and Stewards Going on Strike Monday

Impacting Travel | Michael Isenbek | May 23, 2015

Alitalia Pilots and Stewards Going on Strike Monday

Travel headaches may abound at airports across Italy on Monday when Alitalia pilots and stewards who are members of the ANPAC union conduct a 24-hour strike that will result in flight cancellations. 

According to Italian wire service ANSA, ANPAC does not feel Alitalia management has given "adequate guarantees that employment levels" will be maintained (i.e., that there won't be layoffs), after expiration in February of “solidarity” contracts with Alitalia's CityLiner domestic service.

The union also maintains that when other carriers, including Blue Air of Romania, lease Alitalia aircraft, they are crowding out Alitalia staff. ANPAC also objects to situations where customers think they are booking with Alitalia, but actually fly with a smaller regional airline — a situation that has caused post-accident lawsuits, according to ANSA.

"We will not accept compromises or ambiguous choices that could generate more employment problems," ANPAC told ANSA.

The Associated Press reported Alitalia’s response to the union. In a statement, the flagship Italian airline called the forced flight cancellations “disrespectful” in light of the fire that occurred in Rome’s airport two weeks ago, which is still causing air travel disruptions. The carrier added that the layoff threat is false, and these issues have already been resolved with other unions that represent most of their pilots and flight attendants.

Both AP and ANSA noted that Monday’s strike would not include the airports in the Italian cities of Bari, Brinidisi, and Genoa.

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