Eckerö Line lays off 500 staff

If the situation improves in the coming months, the staff who have now been made redundant will have an option to return to their jobs.

File picture of Eckerö Line ship / Credit: Eckerö

Ferry operator Eckerö Line is making up to 500 staff redundant.

The majority of them are seafarers, according to the Seaman’s Union, and cuts will be felt for the crews of the M/s Eckerö and M/s Birka Stockholm in Åland and mainland Finland as well as Birka Cruises’ Stockholm Office.

Just a skeleton crew of 13 people will be kept work on the ships.

A letter of termination has been sent to the employees promising full pay for their notice period which in most cases is five or six months.

The company has been in talks with unions about how best to handle the process, and has agreed that when the situation improves they will take back staff who previously got made redundant, for a period of nine months.

“We just have to hope for the best that the situation will return to normal as soon as possible and traffic will be able to start. The staff of the Eckerö shipping company has a long notice period, which allows them to be taken back to work if we are able to return to normal traffic” Eckerö’s HR Manager Lasse Karlsson told Ålandstidningen newspaper on Wednesday

“We have made an agreement with the unions to readmit the laid-off people if traffic resumes. The readmission obligation is valid for nine months from the date of termination” he explained.  (24.4.2020). ”

Two Eckerö Line ships, the M/s Finlandia and M/s Finbo Cargo, are working on ‘security of supply’ routes transporting goods between Helsinki and Tallinn.