I can't afford my son's Confirmation Day -- mum
A SINGLE mother who has been an Aer Lingus cabin crew member for the past 22 years says she fears she won't be able to pay for her son's Confirmation Day if the dispute continues.
Linda Flannery, from Clondalkin, has two boys aged 11 and 12 and a "high" mortgage.
Now she says she is experiencing stress and sleeplessness and has described Aer Lingus' s disciplinary procedures as having a domino effect on staff -- where each member is falling one by one.
"Yesterday I came to work knowing that I was facing suspension. I got into my uniform to report for a flight, knowing that the outcome could lead to a suspension and being taken off the rota.
"We're falling one by one. I've two dependent sons and a high mortgage. And this is after 22 years of taking such pride in my work, in my uniform, and total respect for the passengers. It's really upsetting that it's come to this."
She stressed: "I'm ready and willing to work my duty. I'm here today in full uniform with a kit bag, ready for a flight. I want to work, but I can't work."
Linda has been taken off Aer Lingus's roster because of her opposition to the new scheme.
She stressed that she can't afford financially to wait a long period for the dispute with Aer Lingus to be resolved.
"I can't hold out. My mortgage is due at the end of the month. Where am I going to get the money for bills? My son is making his Confirmation on March 1, and I'm wondering what I'm going to get him.
"But this has brought us stronger as a group. I've seen management come and go, but the cabin crew are still here." Linda describes the new rosters as "unreasonable and unsustainable".
"They will make make family life impossible," she says.
"It would be complete and utter turmoil in my life. My children wouldn't know from what end of the week they'd see their mother. They need their mum, and going off on a tour of duty for 27 days and spending days in another country, isn't a family life.
"I didn't sleep last night. I've had sleepless nights looking at the rosters."