Strikes threat as Aer Lingus cuts 1,500 jobs

Unions have reacted to Aer Lingus plans to cut up to 1,500 jobs by November 1 by threatening strikes.

The Irish carrier announced the redundancies yesterday as part of a Euro74 million cost-cutting programme that it described as “very aggressive”, having reported a loss of Euro22 million for the first-half of the year.

The jobs will go through the wholesale outsourcing of ground-handling operations at Dublin and cuts at Heathrow, Shannon and Cork. Aer Lingus will also slash its budget for marketing and distribution.

Ireland’s biggest airline union Siptu said it would begin a strike ballot this week, while fellow union Impact said it would consult members on action.

Aer Lingus is locked in a fares battle with Ryanair, which owns 29% of its rival but has been blocked from a takeover by the Irish government.

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