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Police unions threaten airport strikes from 26 August

Airport disruption
09:26 24/08/2022

Belgium’s four police unions are threatening a strike at the country’s airports from Friday, report Bruzz and Belga.

The unions cite immense work pressure and discontent with a cost-cutting plan by the minister of the interior that they say would compromise safety. They had asked for the plan to be withdrawn, but their complaints were overruled. 

Police unions are activating a strike notice at all airports where officers work for the period from Friday 26 August to Sunday 4 September.

Unions haven’t yet decided what further methods will follow the strike, but are considering legal action. 

Protest at plan

“We had hoped that they would open their eyes, but we were told that the council of ministers has taken the decision and that they will stick to it,” Joery Dehaes of the ACV Politie union said. 

That plan involves abolishing night shifts at airports, which would be replaced by inspectors working 10-hour shifts. 

“Inspectors have to work eight hours in the control boxes without a break,” Dehaes said.

“The work pressure is so high that inspectors cannot sleep at night after their shift. There are inspectors who drive home weeping and one inspector is in intensive care after suffering heart failure.”

They say the cancellation of night shifts will carry especially high risks at smaller airports. 

“Certain jobs cannot be done with just two or three agents,” Dehaes said.



Written by Helen Lyons