Pay deal will leave Aer Lingus pilots ‘better off’, Ialpa says

Pilots will be balloted on the new pay offer

By Cillian Sherlock (PA)

Aer Lingus pilots will be “better off” if they agree to a new pay deal, their union has said.

Pilots in the Irish Air Line Pilots’ Association (Ialpa) are to be balloted on a 17.75% deal following a recommendation from the Labour Court aimed at resolving a long-running dispute with Aer Lingus over pay.

The pay rises come across a period of 2022-2026.

Ialpa suspended a work-to-rule which began at the end of June pending the outcome of the ballot.

Aer Lingus, which cancelled hundreds of flights during the dispute, welcomed a decision by Ialpa leadership to recommend the deal to its members.

The developments were also welcomed by Taosieach Simon Harris.

The pilots had initially sought a pay increase of 24%, which they said equated to inflation since the last pay rise in 2019.

Speaking on Thursday, Ialpa president Mark Tighe said: “It is not quite the inflation that we were discussing but we’re looking at, two years from now, pilots will be 19.2% better off than they were – which is someways towards inflation.”

He added: “We’re recommending it because we believe its a deal that the pilots can hopefully accept.”

He told RTE’s Morning Ireland: “And we’ll move on, we’ve had a very successful time as a group of people demonstrating our unity and strength together – and that’s vitally important.”

Asked if the deal included any increased productivity measures for pilots, Mr Tighe said: “None at all.”

Further asked if he regretted the disruption to passengers during the industrial action, he said: “I most certainly did not want any inconvenience towards our passengers.

“I’ve said repeatedly how important they are to us as pilots but unfortunately management could have come to this a long time ago.

“The question should really be directed towards them.”

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