Women around the world will be backing staff at Qatar Airways (QR) who are subject to victimisation and mistreatment tomorrow, International Women’s Day. They will be protesting to the airline over its unacceptable attitudes to female workers, as part of an international expression of support organised by the ITF (International Transport Workers’ Federation) (seewww.8marchqatar.org for more details).
Women are particularly vulnerable at the autocratically-run airline, where any infringement of the draconian rules can lead to termination, deportation and even imprisonment. Anyone who becomes pregnant is liable to be dismissed straight away. QR staff are not allowed to marry for five years, and even after that time have to ask permission to wed. They are kept under constant strict surveillance (even in their private time) and are subject to inspections, curfews and arbitrary dismissal. All personnel are subjected to lifelong gagging clauses. (Seewww.itfglobal.org/press-area/index.cfm/pressdetail/9707 and also this pioneering recent article in Sweden’s Expressen newspaper:www.expressen.se/nyheter/the-truth-about-the-luxury-of-qatar-airways for more on QR rules)
ITF president Paddy Crumlin commented: “To work for Qatar Airways is to always be looking over your shoulder – and that’s particularly true for women workers. It’s a climate of fear. The airline’s unwholesome reputation is more than deserved. International Women’s Day gives a focus for something that must be a mission all year round: to bring wholesale change to this notorious employer.”
The ITF campaigns against the mistreatment of, and denial of labour rights to, personnel at Qatar Airways, and successfully challenged the attempt by Qatar to have the ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization) moved to the country’s capital, Doha.
To learn more about what’s wrong at the airline seewww.youtube.com/watch?v=B9A6Ya_Dxyg
For more about tomorrow’s action see also http://thndr.it/1cnrvaP
For more information contact ITF press officer, Sam Dawson.
Direct line: + 44 (0)20 7940 9260.
International Transport Workers' Federation - ITF:
ITF House, 49 - 60 Borough Road, London SE1 1DS
Tel: + 44 (0) 20 7403 2733
Fax: + 44 (0) 20 7375 7871