We are appalled by the government-supported LOT Polish Airlines policy. First, the company’s management reduced the salaries of full-time flight attendants by half, which caused that the remuneration of most of them fall below the minimum wage. At the same time, the company had not applied for aid offered by the anti-crisis shield.
Next, we learned that the government will support the national carrier with PLN 2.9 billion. Despite the promised support, today the company’s management board announced a group redundancy plan that will affect around 300 full-time employees. Even so, the company does not plan to do any budget cuts either among the management or self-employed staff.
The decisions made by company management are inconsistent, incomprehensible, and disadvantageous to the crews. This is another step in the campaign against full-time workers. It seems that the company management wants to use pandemics to get rid of all statutory staff. This is happening, although the very fact of the existence of B2B contracts in the company raises serious legal doubts and compromises the national carrier. Self-employed contractors perform the same duties and have the same reporting line as statutory employees. According to the law, the B2B contracts should disappear from LOT Polish Airlines.
The trade union Union Alternative demands the abandonment of the planned collective redundancies and partial allocation of the government aid to improve the working conditions of full-time employees. Raising the basic salaries of each full-time cabin crew member by PLN 1,400, or 50% of the minimum wage, would cost around PLN 8.5 million yearly, which is 0.3% of the support offered by the government. We do not comprehend why a Polish Airlines LOT cannot spend a fraction of government aid on the salaries of people without which its aircraft would not be able to fly.
On the other hand, if the financial situation of the company requires budget cuts, the necessary savings should begin with the company’s management staff and the elimination of self-employment.