Sat, Sep 07, 2019 - Page 2 News List

EVA, union continue dispute over strike

Staff writer, with CNA

Members of the Taoyuan Flight Attendants’ Union protest outside the Ministry of Labor offices in Taipei yesterday holding a banner that reads: “Striking is a human right, EVA Airways should stop its suppression.”

Photo: CNA

Disputes between EVA Airways and its flight attendants, who went on a 20-day strike in June, have still not been resolved, as they cannot agree on issues related to the strike, they said yesterday.

At a rally in front of the Ministry of Labor in Taipei, members of the Taoyuan Flight Attendants’ Union accused EVA of failing to meet the agreed terms when the strike ended on July 6.

“We urge EVA to stop using 19th-century thinking to deal with its workers in the 21st century,” union president Chao Kang (趙剛) said, adding that the airline has been retaliating against the union and the flight attendants who participated in the strike.

For instance, the carrier has refused to drop a lawsuit against union leaders and is seeking damages of NT$34 million (US$1.09 million) per day for what it claims was an illegal strike mobilized by the union, Chao said.

EVA has also failed to restore benefits to the flight attendants who went on strike, particularly discounts on fares, he added.

The airline declined to fully restore discount fares for affected flight attendants unless they promise greater flexibility on work assignments, which could sometimes amount to overwork, the union said.

EVA said that it had created a timetable to phase discount fares back in over the next three years.

As for the lawsuit, the airline said that the union’s demand, prior to the strike, to have a representative on the airline’s board of directors was a matter of corporate management, which is only within the purview of EVA’s shareholders, making the strike illegal.

The union and the airline are scheduled to hold another round of talks on Wednesday next week, as their last three rounds of discussions were unproductive.

On May 8, EVA threatened to withdraw discounted fares for employees and their relatives who join the strike to mitigate its effects.

However, in the final round of negotiations with the union, it was agreed that the benefits would be restored progressively, with the details to be decided within two months.

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