SAS ground workers call in sick

Dec. 18, 2007 at 3:06 PM
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OSLO, Norway, Dec. 18 (UPI) -- A number of Ground Services workers at Scandinavian Airlines in Norway called in sick Tuesday, but unions claim they haven't called for strikes or slowdowns.

More than 20 workers at SAS Ground Services called in sick, "double the number of sick calls than normal," union representative Hans Jacob Opsahl told Aftenposten.

Opsahl said the spike in sick calls wasn't because of an organized slowdown, claiming instead workers were anxious over job uncertainty at SAS and "many simply aren't well."

Labor unrest at the airline has been percolating for some time over SAS management's plans to concentrate on core airline business and spin off three subsidiaries, including Ground Services, Aftenposten said.

The other two spin-off candidates are SAS Technical Services and portions of SAS Cargo. Union officials said they feared as many as 10,000 workers could lose their jobs.

SAS reportedly was ready to move on the spin-off Monday, but the postponed any action until February, hoping to avoid labor disruptions during the busy holiday travel season, the newspaper reported.

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