Labour unions welcome court ruling in favour of Aeroflot flight attendants
On Wednesday, September 6, the Moscow City Court issued a ruling on the lawsuit of Aeroflot flight attendants Evgenia Magurina and Irina Jerusalimskaya. The claims of the airline workers were partially met. Russian trade unions welcome this decision and consider it necessary to seek the elimination of all types of discrimination for the airline employees.
Evgenia Magurina and Irina Jerusalimskaya in their lawsuits demanded, first of all, to render the item of the airline’s provisions, which establishes a lower wage premium for flight attendants with a clothes size exceeding Russian 48 size, inapplicable. They also demanded to charge back unpaid monthly premiums and a compensation for moral damage.
Evgeniya Magurina’s lawsuit also demanded a judicial recognition for the fact of discrimination. Except for this point, the Moscow City Court ruled to satisfy the claims of stewardesses. Legal support was provided by experts of the Center for Social and Labor Rights (CSTP).
“We are satisfied with the decision of the Moscow City Court,” said Irina Jerusalimskaya. “The court put an end to the question of whether the salary of an employee can depend on the size of his or her clothes. The judgment clearly shows common sense and it is important for all employees of the airline. We hope that after this decision, Aeroflot management will not accept such ill-considered internal regulations.”
“I want to thank the lawyers who conducted our case, and the media, which covered our struggle widely. I would like to express my gratitude to the trade union movement, which fully supported us, first of all, to the Sheremetyevo trade union of the flight crew (SHPLS) and the Sheremetyevo union of flight attendants,” said Irina Jerusalimskaya.
She also stressed: “We hope this court ruling, the flight attendant’s profession will be perceived not as work in a modelling agency, but from the viewpoint of professionalism, flight safety and the quality of service on board.”
“Sheremetyevo trade union of the flight crew is satisfied with the court decision,” said Igor Deldyuzhov, the president of SHPLS. “The decision of the Moscow City Court requires Aeroflot to abandon the obviously discriminatory internal regulatory documents that determine the payment for flight attendants, not based on their professional qualities, but based on age and size of clothes.”
“At the same time, we observe that employees of the airline face various types of discrimination,” continued Igor Deldyuzhov. “First of all, there appears discrimination of pilots based on their trade union membership. Members of the SHPLS face pressure from the leadership of Aeroflot, who are trying to force them to leave the union. Our union SHPLS together with the union of flight attendants aspires to resist to all facts and ways of discrimination of the airline workers.”
The president of the Russian Confederation of Labor (KTR), Boris Kravchenko, who sharply criticized the discriminatory practices of Aeroflot earlier, also expressed his satisfaction with the court’s ruling: “We would be amazed if the Russian judicial system would leave in force the scandalous provisions of the ill-fated instructions containing obvious signs of gender discrimination in the world of work.”
“KTR welcomes the ruling,” said Boris Kravchenko. “I should note that the competent and persistent actions of the members of the Sheremetyevo union of flight attendants, supported by the KTR, not only led to the abolition of discriminatory provisions, but also sharply raised the issue of the need for legislative changes to combat discrimination in the world of work.”