UPDATE: Since posting this originally at 8:00am on 28 February, EUROCONTROL IS NOW REPORTING that Frankfurt’s airport may be closed tomorrow from 6:00a to 12:00p tomorrow, 29 February due to a sympathy strike by Air Traffic Controllers….
In news from Frankfurt this morning, it appears that the labor union representing the ground handlers that are currently on strike is seeking to recruit Air Traffic Controllers to join the strike. GdF, the German union who represents the airport workers currently on strike came out with a plea for Air Traffic Controllers to join the strike as a sign of solidarity on Wednesday 29 March from 5:00a to 11:00a local Frankfurt time. If Controllers agree, it could lead to 300 flight disruptions or cancellations. With the current strike, approximately 150-200 flights are being canceled daily with the brunt of these cancelations being burdened by Lufthansa.
In my opinion this is where the Union really loses substantial credibility with me. Normally I am not a fan of unions, and I am not one in this case. However, I can understand the ground handler strike. With a new runway open there’s more activity at the airport, and they feel they deserve more compensation for a higher work load. I get that and hope a favorable resolution is reached (selfishly, please have this resolved by May 1 ahead of my travel to Germany, Istanbul and London!).
What I don’t like is the new tactic of dragging in Air Traffic Controllers who are at this point innocent bystanders, and most likely happy with their jobs and using them as pawns in the union’s scheme. Something like this will just lead to all parties digging in their heels even deeper and creating additional animosity. Thoughts? Am I wrong here?