The 20th October is the International Day of the Air Traffic Controller and many will have seen this highlighted across numerous social media platforms including exhortations to “hug a controller.” The ATCOs’ Branch would also like to offer thanks to all of our members, across all the employers we represent, for the professionalism, expertise and dedication to safety that they offer every single day of every single week of every single year.
Now more than ever the role that our members play in ensuring that the travelling public can reach their destinations safely and efficiently should be cherished and not taken for granted. The pace of change in Air Traffic Management continues to accelerate with our members adapting constantly to new technologies, airspace changes and so on. Staffing levels remain challenging across the Units that our members work and the efforts made by our members to ensure that these shortages do not lead to significant delays should be applauded. Unfortunately, in some instances, these efforts are taken for granted and instead lead to requests for more attendances, longer shifts and even more flexibility.
On this International Day of the Air Traffic Controller the ATCOs’ Branch reaffirms our commitment to continue to fight to preserve the working conditions of all our members, to ensure that we pressure ANSPs to adequately staff operations and to continue our work to ensure that changes in technology are fit for purpose before being introduced.