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HOME  > Past issues  > 2023 March 22 - 28  > KLM ordered to provide open-ended positions to 29 Japanese contract CAs
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2023 March 22 - 28 TOP3 [LABOR]

KLM ordered to provide open-ended positions to 29 Japanese contract CAs

March 28, 2023

The Tokyo District Court on March 27 issued a ruling in support of 29 former Japanese cabin attendants demanding that their dismissals by KLM Royal Dutch Airlines be nullified and that their right to claim open-ended positions be recognized.

The 29 plaintiffs are members of the Japan Cabin Crew Union (JCU) which organizes individual cabin crewmembers across company lines.

In the court battle, they argued that the national flag carrier of the Netherlands unilaterally terminated their contracts in July 2018 with the aim of evading legal obligations under Japan’s Labor Contract Act. The law requires employers to offer open-ended contracts to fixed-term contract workers with more than five years of employment with the company.

In addition, the plaintiffs pointed out that the hiring process of Japanese cabin attendants, their training, and their schedule management take place at the Dutch airlines’ headquarters. They said that they are entitled to be covered by the Dutch employment law which stipulates that fixed-term contract workers working with the same employers for more than three years are deemed to be employed under open-ended contracts.

The court sided with the plaintiffs and ordered KLM to convert the plaintiffs’ contracts to open-ended ones.

After the ruling at a press conference in the Labor Ministry office building, one of the plaintiffs said, “It is unacceptable for the company to sack skilled workers essential for safe aviation.”

In another lawsuit filed by former Japanese cabin attendants against KLM, the plaintiffs won a court decision to revoke the company’s unfair dismissal.

Past related article:
> Ex-KLM Japanese CAs win nullification of their dismissals [January 18, 2022]
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