June 01, 2006 05:22 ET

Amicus Says European Parliament Must Strengthen Airline Passenger Safety

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(CCNMatthews - June 1, 2006) -

Attention: News, Industrial and Transport editors

Amicus the UK's biggest private sector union has today accused the European Parliament of risking passenger and aircraft safety by supporting proposals to omit airline cabin crew from a Pan European Licence for airline staff.

A delegation from Amicus will hand a petition to the European Parliament today in Brussels along with cabin crew unions from all over Europe.

The introduction of a licence would ensure minimum standards throughout the Civil Aviation industry and recognise the increasingly important role cabin crew play in both aircraft and passenger safety. Airline pilots and engineers are required to hold licenses but under the new proposals cabin crew will be exempt.

The events of 9/11, changed forever the public perception of Cabin Crew. No longer are these workers considered glorified waiters/waitresses carrying out "women's work". Cabin Crew are safety professionals. They are the inflight active response unit who must be ready to act in any situation.

However, intense lobbying by airline companies within respective member states has influenced the wording of the EU OPS regulation document. Lobbying has been particularly intense from low cost airlines who are hoping to save money on training costs by attempting to evade training their staff up to licensed standards.

Amicus National Officer, Gordon White

"Proposals to omit airline cabin crew for a Pan European Licence will be a blow to air safety and a failure to recognise the hugely important role cabin crew have to play in an environment of heightened security fears.

"In terms of Aircraft passenger safety, the people in the cheap seats are entitled to exactly the same level of professional service afforded to those passengers in business or first class. Without a proper licensing system throughout Europe the chances of achieving consistently, high levels of safety will continue to be reduced."

The EU Ops regulations are the minimum requirements for Civil Aviation legislation across Europe.

The European Parliament has always supported the creation of a certification process to ensure all Cabin Crew across 39 European countries are fully qualified to a common minimum standard. However, intense lobbying by airline companies within respective member states has influenced the wording of the EU OPS document.

Amicus is therefore supporting the campaign initiated by the European Transport Federation who will be present at the European Parliament in Brussels on 1 June 2006 where a petition will be submitted by cabin crew unions from all over Europe along with 3 amendments to the proposed legislation.

Amicus is urging support from all UK MEP's for the 3 amendments that will secure a meaningful licensing system which will stop discrimination against cabin crew, ensure passenger safety remains at a premium and finally recognise Cabin Crew as safety professionals.

- Amicus, UK's largest private sector Union with 1.2 Million members
- 18,000 members working in the UK civil Aviation Industry
- ETF represents 2 Million 500,000 transport workers throughout 39 European countries.


Contact: Ciaran Naidoo 07768 931 315

Contact Information

  • Amicus Press Office
    Ciaran Naidoo
    07768 931 315