Hanging by a thread
Following the awareness successfully triggered at EC level (without the petition even breaking the 100k mark yet), European pilots were told DG MOVE (Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport) would "meet experts on this specific matter [p2f]", which they did, on July 18th (2 days after the 10 years of the ECA). Below is part of the presentation that unfolded:
[presentation also being PART II and last of USA: P2F origins (PART I)]
Along with "its own study on employment and working conditions in air transport and airports" conducted "in collaboration with its consultant ***** ****** ******" (and supported by DG EMPL); pilots' best and only shot to eradicate pay-to-fly might reside in the "findings [...] available this summer".
Meanwhile, as per our list of August last year, the WG (Working Group) on "New Business Models" did mention p2f in its study, which resulted in an EASA RAG (Rulemaking Advisory Group) report in April (not public), where:
"Today, the management system (SMS) does not systematically capture the correlation between different employment types (e.g. temporary employment models, employment via employment agencies, pay-to-fly employment schemes) within one organisation (AOC holder) and levels of occurrence reporting. Different employment models within one organisation might have a potentially negative impact on the operator’s safety culture and induce a potential risk of an unstable workforce.
Therefore, the WG believes that in the short-term more evidence should be gathered by recommending that the operator’s management system should capture [...] data by type of contract on occurrence reporting, fatigue reporting, sickness reporting, reports on turnover, FDM events".
Which is an encouraging start but cannot corroborate the claims of national policitians that "the EASA has performed a detailed analysis of the potential safety consequences of different contractual relationships [...] [which] does not show that this [p2f & freelance pilots] is now a proven urgent safety problem", which is untrue, simply because:
"The WG was NOT able to discuss all the developments of business models. Due to the short time frame available of only three months and the vast scope of the topic, the WG only looked at some commonalities [...]".
How easy it is to avoid accountability hiding behind a report that is not made public? The answer: