Ben Gurion Workers To Strike For 3 Hours

TEL AVIV (Hamodia Staff) -
Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv. August 5, 2014.  (Mosh Shai/Flash90)
Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv. August 5, 2014. (Mosh Shai/Flash90)

The Israel Airports Authority (IAA) workers committee was set to strike Ben Gurion Airport on Thursday morning for three hours in solidarity with the postal workers.

No planes will be allowed to take off, and passengers on planes that land will be unable to collect their baggage from from 11 a.m to 2 p.m.

The union justified the inconvenience to thousands of travelers on the grounds that such short notice of the strike would encourage all parties involved in the Postal Authority dispute to find a solution.

“We won’t allow the State to fire 1,500 workers and hire contract employees instead,” IAA Workers Committee Chairman Pinchas Idan said.

In other management-labor news, the Haifa District Labor Court permitted Israel Electric Corporation (IEC) to strike this Friday, after negotiations reached a dead end.

The Court noted that the strike was aimed against “the state’s refusal to negotiate with the workers’ representatives on the effect of its measures aimed at introducing private producers into the electricity sector on the work conditions and job security of the company’s workers.”

The extent of the strike will be determined at a hearing on Friday morning.

IEC CEO Eli Glickman warned on Wednesday that the company’s credit rating would be downgraded if the reform efforts fail. In the Labor Court hearing, Glickman said, “As soon as there are no reform discussions, the rating agencies will immediately lower the rating.”

However, his contention seemed at odds with a recent upgrade. On July 3, Maalot S&P raised IEC’s credit rating for domestic debt from AA- to AA, citing “improvement in overall liquidity and better financial ratios.”

Maalot stressed that the upgrade was unrelated to implementation of reform in IEC, noting, “Early implementation of reform is likely to raise the company’s credit rating even further,” and did not predict a downgrade if negotiations for reform failed.