Lufthansa in Germany and the union reach a wage agreement for ground staff

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BERLIN (AP) — Lufthansa and a union representing its ground staff in Germany reached an agreement Thursday to end a pay dispute, a week after a day-long strike that forced the airline to cancel more than 1,000 flights .

The agreement between Lufthansa and service workers’ union ver.di, covering some 20,000 employees in various ground operations, involves one-off payments of 200 euros ($203) each retroactive to July 1.

It also provides for an increase in monthly base salaries of 2.5% – or at least 125 euros per employee – from January 1 and a further 2.5% from July 1 next year. The contract is valid for 18 months.

Lufthansa personnel chief Michael Niggemann said in a statement that “in view of the still high burdens of the pandemic and the uncertain economy, we have spread the salary increase over several stages and provided planning security. longer term with a duration of 18 months. ”

Ver.di’s chief negotiator, Christine Behle, said the result would even mean an effective increase of up to 18.4% for check-in employees, arguing that the result offsets high inflation and also means a increase in real wages.

The union had initially demanded a 9.5% wage increase this year. The strike she staged on Wednesday last week added to the recent European travel turmoil. Lufthansa claims that this walkout cost it around 35 million euros.

Lufthansa still has to resolve a separate pay dispute with a union representing pilots. This union said on Sunday that the pilots had voted in favor of a possible strike, but that the walkouts could still be avoided.

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