THAI staff threaten strike action
Thai Airways International Plc (THAI) has assured it plans no salary cuts for middle-level and low-level staff amid speculation ground staff plan a strike against the company's cost-cutting scheme.
Rumours of a strike on Thursday spread rapidly on social media Monday via groups of staff, prompting urgent attempts by the airline to hose down the reports.
"Everyone who is planning to fly on Thursday should come early since flights may be delayed as ground staff will strike," the message sent via Line groups of THAI staff said.
According to the message, the welfare of low-level staff has been affected by the company's business rehabilitation scheme since 2011.
The planned strike is meant to deflect the problem to executives and prevent further impacts from the scheme, following the company's huge losses of 18.1 billion baht in the first nine months of this year.
Capt Kanok Thongphueak, deputy THAI president for human resources and company affairs, rushed Monday to stamp out the speculation saying it was causing "serious damage" to the airline.
He insisted there will be no salary changes for employees as the measure has been applied only to the company's nine top executives who volunteered to have their wages cut by 10%.
The strike speculation erupted as THAI cooperative executives are scheduled to meet on Thursday to discuss problems surrounding savings cooperative members who fail to pay back money they borrowed from various cooperatives, and their colleagues who are forced to shoulder their debts because of their guarantor status, said Capt Kanok, also THAI cooperatives president.
"What is expected to happen that day is representatives of the guarantor will lodge a complaint with the cooperatives on the issue," he said.
At present, there are about 700 cooperative members who have been dragged into trouble as their salaries will have to be cut so they can settle their friends' debts, according to a THAI source.