In a silent protest in Rome, dozens of Alitalia’s former flight attendants stripped off their uniforms and wore only underwear Wednesday.
Italy’s long-running airline was financially insolvent and flew its last flight Oct. 14. ITA, a new airline that uses some Alitalia aircraft, started flying the following day. It bought Alitalia, but now it has fewer than 3,000 employees.
Officials from the Union claim that those who work for ITA have been hired at significantly lower salaries.
About 50 ex-flight attendants sat in rows on a square at the top of Rome’s Capitoline Hill. They then slowly removed their overcoats, uniform jackets, and skirts from the cobblestone sidewalk. Finally, they stepped out their high-heeled shoes.
They remained silent for a while, barefoot and wearing only a slip. They then carefully collected their clothes and shoes, and shouted together “We are Alitalia!”
Union leaders are urging the government to extend unemployment benefits for at least five years.