It’s been three months since 69 pilots were dumped by Air Malta, the country’s national airline. A former pilot has now spoken out against the “psychological warfare” these employees faced with little communication from authorities.
“The only information given to these 69 families came from the union. Nothing was ever communicated to the employees by the employer except for a redundancy email at 23:15 on a Friday night.”
“Most found out about their redundancy through the newspapers, including myself. Newspapers which for the most part decided to publish articles attacking a group of people without any factual content and burying statements made by their union.”
“This has been going on for as long as I can remember yet never more so than these past few months. Bullied by management, vilified by the government and ignored by everyone,” Luke Mifsud said in a social media post.
The 69 pilots were made redundant in June as a result of collective redundancies declared by the airline. This came after disputes on a potential pay cut during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We speak so much about pushing our youth forward and the only thing Air Malta has done is throw away the time and effort put into its youth. 12 cadets that just finished their training, investment out the window. 69 professionals, most of which can give over 30 years of service to the airline and the country. Shame on you,” he said.
Air Malta pilots have now kicked off court proceedings against the government over its failure to honour an agreement signed two years ago which guaranteed the same pay should they be made redundant.
On 26 January 2018, then-Tourism Minister Konrad Mizzi guaranteed pilots within the pilots union (ALPA) that the conditions of employment contained in the collective agreement currently in force would be safeguarded until the signing of a new collective agreement.
It remains to be seen how the situation will develop. Until then, former pilots will be left with no income.
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