German unions to hit railway, airports with new strikes


A German labour union is calling for railway workers to stage an eight-hour strike on Friday to back calls for an inflation-busting pay raise. Walkouts are also scheduled at three airports this week in a parallel pay dispute.
The EVG rail workers’ union called for members to walk off the job from 3 am to 11 am on Friday. It said on Wednesday that it had “to increase pressure on employers, who think that they can ignore the demands of their workforce and conduct wage negotiations in a patronising way.”
EVG’s walkout will affect around 50 companies that provide rail services — including the main operator, state-owned Deutsche Bahn.Deutsche Bahn personnel chief Martin Seiler described the strike as “completely pointless and unnecessary” and claimed that EVG’s aim was to score points in a bitter long-term rivalry with the other main railway workers’ union, GDL, which is not involved in the current pay dispute. Deutsche Bahn said it expected Friday’s strike to have “massive effects” on rail services across Germany.The next round of talks with EVG is scheduled for Tuesday.