Recently I came into the possession of some cabin crew complaints. Someone concerned for crew’s wellbeing sent some unsettling screenshots to me. Screenshots are taken from the internal blog where cabin crews are “discussing” their issues with Kevin Griffiths, VP of Service Delivery in Emirates Airline.
Since all ex and present Emirates staff share same problems and issues, I have agreed to publish some of these screenshots in hope that someone will react and improve working and living conditions for cabin crew.
Let’s make no mistake here: we are all loyal to the company itself, including me, even though I know this is hard to believe. I fought for two whole months to stay and continue to work in EK. At the same time I was fighting for my dignity. Yes, dignity. I have the right to try and change my reality if I don’t like it and I did it. You see, when you are treated like an animal, without rights and respect, without a decent salary even, you start to lose the sense of a self-value and your will starts to break. At this point you can either turn into an obedient slave (which is the very aim of this kind of staff treatment) or you can raise your voice and defend yourself. You can also resign, but a resignation is a far more painful solution than both of previous mentioned ones because it’s a total personal and professional defeat at every possible level when you leave your country to come to work in another (totally different) one.
Let’s not make another mistake: EK management has developed some rather wicked methods of deceiving its staff. First thing that all departments’ management have in common is “pretending to listen”. Mr. Kevin Griffiths has opened this blog for cabin crew last year (as I can see from screenshots) and nobody addressed the issues so far. On the contrary, many benefits are taken away from cabin crew. Open forum was organized in EKAS, and only few issues have been addressed, excluding the biggest ones: salary, living conditions, long and tiring shifts, medical insurance and transportation.
It also seems that management is using some nasty “motivation” strategy globally and as a perfect excuse for their incapability. This is the motto sentence of that strategy:
“You must find a motivation within yourself, and if you are still not happy, resign. There are thousands waiting in line to work for us”.
Man, if this wasn’t a stupid logic in the circumstances where you have mass of educated, smart and multicultural staff, it would be ingenious. Except it’s not. It’s stupid and it makes EK staff angry. Let me remind you that I got a written warning for expressing my civilized disagreement with this quoted statement at the Aviation College, during a customer service training. The Trainer, Mrs. Ulfat, complained to my managers for not agreeing with her, and my managers gave me a warning. If this wasn’t so sad it would be a huge joke. Trainers and managers are punishing you because you are not agreeing with them? And this training was all about why we should smile and be better than Etihad customer service agents. You know what else is funny? They gave us a cube of chocolate (a special gift from DVP Anoma Manuel, they said) and some wallet-like and cup-like gifts and a lunch coupon to buy that smile. Enough said about EK motivation strategy. If you are (an obedient) manager you get motivated by money and respect. If you are anything less you get a cube of chocolate and a warning if you don’t eat chocolate.
It turns out that it is easy to be a manager in the country which forbids strikes and unions and your company is not a subject of a Federal Labour Law which protects some of the labour rights. It’s a chicken that lays golden eggs. You just have to show up and pick up those eggs. Except when chicken refuses to lay eggs. Or it resigns. Then you find another chicken, but the eggs, although still golden, are of a lower quality. When that chicken resigns as well (or you terminate it), you go and find another one and you scare it to lay eggs. The chicken agrees to eat the cube of chocolate and to lay eggs, but these eggs have a bitter taste for everyone except the management. From that moment on, every next chicken will lay plain eggs and everybody will notice that, except managers. They will notice it only when all the chickens go to lay golden eggs for another airliner.
Back to the cabin crew. Besides working conditions (such as (lack of) rest, food, salary, backstabbing, maternity leave etc.) seems like they have some serious safety issues and seems like nobody cares.
Since safety issues are a professional subject and I am not a cabin crew professional I will let you read the screenshots (I am apologizing for their occasional bad quality) and make your own conclusions.
Of course, safety is a primary concern for every airliner, so what the he*l is going on in Emirates Airline when cabin crew is complaining about the lack of rest and on-board safety?
Safety and rest: