Ryanair is calling for a crackdown on France’s air traffic controllers and it wants the public to help it out.
The budget Irish airline has launched an online petition calling for the European Commission to crackdown on the number of strikes French air traffic controllers (ATCs) declare.
Since 2009, French ATC unions have staged 39 days of strike action, according to Ryanair, which caused “cancellations for millions of people across Europe.”
The most recent strike on April 12 and 13 caused 3,600 flight cancellations. There are more strikes planned this week on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.
Ryanair’s Kenny Jacobs says in a statement: “It’s unacceptable that Europe’s consumers repeatedly have their holiday and travel plans disrupted or cancelled by the selfish actions of ATC unions every summer, who use strikes as a first weapon rather than a last resort.
“French ATC unions will again stage three further days of strikes this week, which will impact hundreds of thousands of European consumers. It is particularly reprehensible that these strikes are taking place at the height of the peak summer season, deliberately targeting holiday makers and families.”
Ryanair wants Europe to ban air traffic controllers from striking, in the same way police and military are forbidden, or to let other European air traffic controllers to step in and cover for the French during periods of industrial action.
Ryanair plans to deliver its petition, dubbed “Keep Europe’s skies open,” to Brussels once it hits 1 million signatures. It’s not clear how many signatures it currently has. You can sign the petition here.