Airlines wanting to take on Belfast City routes must commit to take on all routes and base themselves at airport

Flybe SquareFlybe workers to rally at Stormont tomorrow [Wednesday, March 11th] at 2pm to demand intervention to secure connectivity and jobs

Belfast City Council votes unanimously for Stormont to establish a public service company to safeguard regionally-significant connections

Unite Regional Officer, George Brash, called upon the Ministers in the Northern Ireland Executive and the Airport Authority to defend the long-term future of Belfast City, connectivity and jobs.

“Flybe’s collapse resulted in a workforce here of 190 being made redundant overnight and posed a direct threat to the long-term sustainability of Belfast City Airport. The airport plays a critical role in securing the economic connectivity of the metropolitan area. It also accommodates vital organ transit, the transportation of patients for medical treatment and allows family members to stay connected. 

“The Airport Authorities and Stormont must ensure that any airline wanting to take on routes, does not cherrypick but commits to take them all on and establish a base at the airport. That’s the only way to guarantee regional connectivity and secure jobs.

“In the absence of such an outcome, then the Northern Ireland Executive must establish a public service airline to safeguard routes and base itself at Belfast City Airport. Many airlines elsewhere in the world are run on a public service basis – why not here? Indeed the case for this approach was recognised by Belfast City Council last night, when councillors across the spectrum were moved by the plight of the workers to vote unanimously for a public service airline to be established. We now need to see that translate into action both in Stormont and Westminster.

“In the days ahead workforce reps will be heading to London to ensure that their interests are not neglected and at 2pm tomorrow [Wednesday, March 11th] Flybe workers and their families will be gathering at Stormont to highlight the need for urgent action to secure jobs and connectivity”, Mr Brash concluded.

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