Int’l labor group drags AirPhil to ‘Boycott PAL’ plea

By Florence F. Hibionada/ PNS

ILOILO – Normal operations may have resumed for Philippine Airlines (PAL) Iloilo yet a renewed call to boycott its services has been made anew. And this time, with the inclusion of yet another airline that has since served as alternative for the Ilonggo riding public.

The double-boycott plea is made by the International Labor Rights Forum (ILRF) in support of the PAL Employees Association (PALEA).

Brian Campbell, ILRF Director for Policy and Legal Programs in a statement called for the rejection of the two airlines.

“Let Lucio Tan, owner of both airlines, know that you won’t fly PAL or AirPhil until locked-out workers have been requested to their regular jobs,” Campbell’s statement went. “It’s time to up the pressure… we know that the airlines cannot withstand a boycott. PAL and AirPhil rely on end-of-year holidays travel for their profit line. If a large enough group of us join the boycott publicly, we will have an impact….Let’s act together for a better future for airline workers who are facing job loss and state-sponsored repression today. Now is the time to join with PALEA in their call for justice.”

The boycott drive has since been called with sustained campaign online. Local efforts are pushed by advocacy group Freedom from Debt Coalition (FDC).

PALEA and PAL management are embroiled in a longstanding labor dispute triggered by the management’s outsourcing of its core services.

Iloilo operations while affected managed to rebound with the resumption now of its normal flights.