Ryanair to hold its first-ever meeting with union

The airline agreed to recognise pilot unions last week in a major departure from its past policy

Ryanair to hold its first-ever meeting with union

Photo: Sam Boal/RollingNews

The first-ever talks between unions and management at Ryanair will take place later.

Over the weekend, pilots called off a threatened pre-Christmas one-day strike that was planned for tomorrow (December 20th).

However IMPACT, the union involved, has already warned that the strike is suspended rather than cancelled.

The union wants the company to clarify the detail of its decision on Friday to recognise unions for the first time in the company's history.

IMPACT has said it will make no further comment until after its meeting with management. 

Ryanair, meanwhile, said last week they had decided to invite unions in Ireland, UK, Germany, Italy, Spain and Portugal to talks in a bid to avert the planned industrial action.

Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary observed: "Recognising unions will be a significant change for Ryanair, but we have delivered radical change before.

"Putting the needs of our customers first, and avoiding disruption to their Christmas flights, is the reason why we will now deal with our pilots through recognised national union structures and we hope and expect that these structures can and will be agreed with our pilots early in the New Year.”

The decision marks a radical departure in policy for the airline, with Mr O'Leary himself having been vocal in his past criticism of unions.

Earlier this year, he argued that pilots' unions are a "busted flush" who "preside over the death of many of the flag carrier airlines".