Several trade unions are not at all happy with the decision of Swiss management to wet-lease several Airbus A220-300s from Air Baltic. The employee representatives accuse the Lufthansa subsidiary of wage dumping and point out that the Air Baltic crews would earn significantly less.
Kapers, Aeropers, VPOD, SEV GATA and the Commercial Association have written a letter of protest to the board of Swiss. It shows extensive concerns and takes the view that the use of wet leases also serves to save costs. Accordingly, Air Baltic flight attendants would earn between 900 and 1.500 euros per month. At Swiss, the minimum wage for cabin crew would be CHF 3.400.
The trade unions also make serious accusations against the management of the Swiss Lufthansa subsidiary. So they really messed up the personnel planning and reacted much too late to the increased demand with too few employees at the same time. During the corona pandemic, Swiss laid off many employees. In the course of mandatory vaccination, numerous employees who did not want to be vaccinated against Covid-19 were again dismissed.
The employee representatives feel they have been ignored by the Swiss management, because during numerous discussions between the social partners there was never any talk of a wet lease cooperation with Air Baltic. It is feared that more jobs could be outsourced to "cheaper countries" in the future.
It is required that Swiss die Cooperation with Air Baltic should blow off before the first flight and in future should only conclude wet lease agreements with airlines that pay at a level comparable to Swiss. It is believed that this agreement would undermine the existing social partnership.
The airline concerned does not want to leave the allegations of the employee representatives uncommented. They confirm that they have received the letter and sharply reject the allegation of wage dumping. Among other things, they explain that the cooperation with Air Baltic should further stabilize the flight schedule and relieve the burden on their own cabin staff. It is also said that the Air Baltic crews would receive expenses for uniform cleaning, overnight stays, expenses in Zurich and for their travel to and from Switzerland.
The accusation that the Weltlease cooperation would undermine the social partnership is viewed completely differently at Swiss. The cooperation would be an entrepreneurial decision and the inclusion of the social partnership would not be necessary at all. There would also be no reason to cancel the Air Baltic wet lease.