Aviation workers have called on the government to review and increase their minimum pay.
Through their national umbrella, Transport and Allied Workers Union Kenya (TAWU), the workers have decried meagre pay and unconducive working conditions.
TAWU Secretary General Dan Mihadi said that the affairs of the aviation workers have been overlooked over the years.
“The government have failed to categorize employees in the aviation sector, there are no minimum wages,” said Mr. Mihadi.
“Even when you are employed in aviation today, you are at the mercy of the employer to decide which pay you should be given,” he added.
The TAWU secretary general said the local working environment does not reflect the standards set by international labour conventions.
According to Mr. Mihadi, the umbrella consists of all shop stewards operating in Kenya including Fly Emirates, Ethiopian Airlines, KLM and ground agencies in the airline.
Mr. Mihadi noted that air transport is critical to the growth of both national and global economies, providing employment opportunities across its value chain.
According to International Air Transport Association (IATA), the aviation industry contributes about four per cent of Kenya’s GDP with over 4,000 direct jobs.
Besides low wages, the union said its members face safety issues for ground-handling workers, lack of leave days, sub-contracting of their labour, occupational health issues and work-related pressures among others.
TAWU affirmed that they have signed an MOU with International Civil Aviation Organization, International Air Transport Association and International Labour Organization to ensure work principles are upheld.
In collaboration with International Transport Workers Federation, the union said they are launching a recruitment campaign to register all workers within their value chain.
The union called on workers with the aviation industry to seize the opportunity and register with the union to increase their collective bargaining efforts.