PAL readies contingency measures in case of union strike

Philippine Airlines (PAL) has assured its passengers that contingency measures are in place to keep its airplanes flying in case members of the PAL Employees Association (PALEA) stage an illegal strike.

PAL stressed that its flights will continue to be operated according to published schedules while all ticket offices and other sales and airport facilities in Metro Manila, the provinces and stations abroad will maintain regular business operations.

“Our interline airline-partners as well as augmentation forces from management are on standby to ensure that our operations are not disrupted in case PALEA members walk out,” said Cielo Villaluna, PAL spokesperson. She stressed that ground workers represents only a fraction of PAL’s 7,000-strong workforce.

The company said that a strike, if declared illegal by proper authorities, could lead to the forfeiture of striking workers’ benefits including those ordered by the Office of the President.

Meanwhile, PAL submitted its counter-proposal consisting of salary increases for the first three years of a three-year collective bargaining agreement (CBA) to be negotiated by PAL with PALEA.

“In good faith, PAL management fulfilled its commitment to submit today a counter-proposal, proof of management’s sincerity and willingness to open negotiations with PALEA,” said Jose S.L. Uybarreta, PAL vice president for Human Resources.

“The amounts of P750 for the first year, P1,500 for the second year and another P1,500 for the third year – are what management believes the company can afford at this time, given the string of massive losses suffered by PAL since 2008,” he said.

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