Passengers face disruption as cleaning staff strike at German airports

Cleaning staff have downed their tools and gone on strike at several German airports.

Passengers face disruption as cleaning staff strike at German airports
Archive photo shows cleaning materials at Berlin Schönefeld airport. Photo: DPA

The action, which is being held due to a dispute over pay and working conditions, is taking place at Frankfurt, Berlin and Münster Osnabrück airports on Tuesday.

In Münster the strike action was due to last 24 hours.

At other airports, such as Munich, Düsseldorf, Stuttgart and Hanover, protests under the banner “uprising of the invisible” were planned.

Air traffic is expected to be hit by the action because planes will not be allowed to take off without being cleaned. However, it is not yet known the exact number of flights or number of passengers set to be affected.

By calling the strike, the IG Bauen-Agrar-Umwelt union, known as IG Bau, is aiming to increase the pressure  on employers in the collective bargaining conflict.

On Facebook the union posted to say there were delays at Frankfurt Airport.

READ ALSO: When are airline passengers in Germany entitled to flight compensation?

There were also protests by staff, including at Münster Osnabrück Airport, which are shown in the Facebook post below.

After six rounds of negotiations, the wage conflict in Germany's largest trade sector, which involves about 650,000 employees, has reached a deadlock. 

IG Bau is demanding a Christmas bonus and the payment of overtime bonuses for part-time employees, among other things.

Employers have so far rejected the calls.

Member comments

  1. The first picture in this article is labeled as “Archive photo shows cleaning materials at Berlin Schönefeld airport”, however that picture is actually from the unopened Berlin Brandenburg Airport.

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.


French customs officers strike over job cuts

Customs officers across France will walk out on Thursday in protest at job cuts that unions say will “weaken the customs network”.

French customs officers strike over job cuts

The national strike on Thursday, March 10th is expected to lead to delays at ports, airports and on the Eurostar.

The strike, which will include a rally outside the National Assembly building in Paris, was called by the CFDT-Douane and has the support of other unions. 

A work-to-rule protest over pay and conditions by customs officers in 2019, under the shadow of Brexit, led to delays and disruption at airports, as well as ports including Calais and Dunkirk, and on Eurostar trains.

Unions are calling on the government to axe plans to switch responsibility for import duty collection to the Direction Générale des Finances Publiques by 2024, at the cost of 700 customs’ officer jobs – and, according to strikers, tens of billions of euros to State coffers.

“We are asking for the reforms to be stopped, mainly that of the transfer of taxation, which is disorganising the network with the elimination of nearly a thousand jobs,” CFDT-Douane’s secretary general David-Olivier Caron said.

The planned job cuts come after years of restructuring and streamlining that has seen thousands of positions disappear, the unions say, when customs fraud and smuggling is rising because of a lack of resources.