Nov 12, 2015

Air France fires 4 workers over boss-bashing incident

Violence erupted at meeting last month, forcing managers to flee

PARIS (Reuters) — Air France said on Thursday it will dimiss four workers over their role in violence that erupted at a works council meeting last month, forcing managers to flee with their shirts in tatters.

Human resources chief Xavier Broseta and long-haul services director Pierre Plissonnier were among those attacked on Oct. 5 as they outlined restructuring plans for the troubled carrier, a division of Air France-KLM.

Photos and video of the scenes were plastered across the global media, prompting hand-wringing in France over the country's image abroad and its tumultuous labour relations.

A fifth worker accused of serious misconduct for assaulting the managers is subject to a separate procedure requiring his dismissal to be approved by a government agency because of his protected status as a union official, the company said.

Discussion of the proposed Air France cuts has been adjourned until the next works council meeting on Nov. 19 when unions have issued a new call for industrial action in protest at the disciplinary measures.

Along with another colleague, the five workers are also due to appear in court on Dec. 2 to face criminal charges in connection with the violence.

Air France said a further 11 staff had been suspended for two weeks without pay for breaking into the company's headquarters on the day of the meeting.