Düsseldorf airport security personnel go on strike | Europe| News and current affairs from around the continent | DW | 11.03.2013
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Düsseldorf airport security personnel go on strike

Travellers going through Düsseldorf airport can expect delays owing to a strike. In the latest of a series of walkouts, security staff at Germany's third-largest airport are to stay off the job for 20 hours.

Passengers waited a bit longer than usual in Düsseldorf on Monday as security workers walked off the job over a pay dispute.

By the late afternoon, 172 flights of the 593 scheduled had been grounded.

Services sector trade union Verdi said that 150 security inspectors would hold a one-day strike at Germany's third-largest airport. The work stoppage began at around 4 a.m. and is to last until midnight local time.

"As long as no new offer is on the table, our only choice is to apply maximum pressure," Verdi negotiator Andrea Becker said.

The union, which is seeking pay increase of up to 30 percent for private security workers, held a similar strike at Cologne airport last week.

The union says that 70 to 80 percent of the security staff in North Rhine-Westphalia are in the lowest pay bracket, earning just 8.23 euros ($10.70) per hour. Verdi is seeking raises of between 2.50 euros and 3.64 euros more per hour for its members.

Verdi's Becker said the union hoped a new collective bargaining agreement could be reached before the upcoming Easter holidays.

Meanwhile on Monday, some 600 security workers at Hamburg Airport reached a deal that gave them a 15 percent pay increase, raising their take home pay to 13,60 euros per hour.

tm/pfd (dpa, Reuters)