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STAFF REPORTER

PALMA
PASSENGERS could face increased disruption in catering services at Palma airport this summer with 170 workers determined to continue industrial action until their pay demands are met.

Some 170 bar and restaurant workers are demanding an extra 100 euros a month from the company that has the concession to run catering service at the airport, Areas.

They say that their current industrial action at the airport, which began on March 10 and is scheduled to continue until April 10, will intensify unless a deal is reached.

The rolling strike comes after eight months of negotiations between the unions and the company.
The strikers cease work for two hours at a time, between 6am and 8am, 1pm and 3pm, and 6pm and 8pm.
Antonio Copete is the Secretary General of the Catering Federation of the UGT, the union which represents the majority of the workers at the airport.
The UGT has five members on the committee negotiating with the company. Two other unions are also represented, the CCOO with three and the USO with one.

Copete said that in the case of no deal being reached over the strike committee's demand for an extra 100 euros a month a hardening of the strike will occur.

This would see workers ceasing activity for a greater number of hours during the day and could coincide with the beginning of the high season. “We are convinced that the company will end up giving in and responding to the demands of the workers,” said Copete.
He added that the strike was producing a disastrous image at the airport. “It's an image that benefits no-one,” he said.
Copete referred to the large volume that passed through the airport and said that the benefits in the sector should be shared more evenly with workers.

Copete regretted the fact that after eight months of negotiations and a couple of weeks of strikes, the response of the company to the unions' demands had been “nought”.

Copete also applauded the support of “practically 100 percent” of the workers for the strike.
Workers are also demanding more staff be employed at the airport to provide greater cover.
Copete pointed out that there was a greater amount of people using the catering services at the airport than in other airports in the mainland.
The unions believe that an extra 20 workers in the airport would greatly improve the efficiency of the service being provided.
They are also calling for a revision of the professional categories.
Copete remembered that last year it was proposed to make improvement to the collective deal that has been in place for the last 25 years but in the end no deal was achieved.