Here's an article from the South China Morning Post:
Cathay Pacific pilots voted overwhelmingly yesterday to refuse to work on their days off, in protest against rosters they say turn their work and family lives into chaos.
From next Tuesday, 1,100 of the 1,300 pilots will begin a work-to-rule by refusing to take phone calls from the company when they are rostered off, which they warn could lead to flight disruptions.
Yesterday's vote for strict compliance with their contract - backed by 95 per cent of the 800 union members who voted - follows months of anger at being asked to swap shifts or work "guaranteed" days off as the airline struggles to staff flights and expand its schedule.
"Following the dispute of last summer, it was agreed that talks would start on a new rostering system and then a trial period would commence," Aircrew Officers Association general secretary John Findlay said after the vote.
"Here we are more than one year later - the talks have not concluded, the trial has not started, the members' personal lives are being disrupted because they're constantly being asked to work changes to their rosters, and they're saying it's time all this stopped." He said the motion went through with little debate.
A senior pilot told the Post : "We're sick and tired of bailing them out. This is what happens when you annoy and overwork your aircrew. If the travelling public is inconvenienced, we're sorry, but this is a combination of arrogance, greed and stupidity on the part of this company and it did not have to happen."
The protest action comes a year after a dispute over pay and conditions led pilots to call in sick en masse, causing widespread flight cancellations and affecting tens of thousands of passengers. Earlier scheduled "contract compliance" action was dropped when that dispute was settled.
Mr Findlay said the intention of yesterday's vote was not to disrupt flights but conceded that if the company could not call on off-duty crew, passengers could be affected.
Cathay says it gives pilots far more days off than required by law, and asks that in return, they help out occasionally by working a "guaranteed" day off in return for one off later. It is recruiting pilots, buying more planes and serving more destinations as part of an expansion drive, but needs staff to work extra shifts while the new crew are trained.
In May, the company asked pilots to sell Cathay some of their annual leave entitlement for this year; few are believed to have volunteered. Cathay says the response was adequate, but some pilots have since had their holidays postponed to next year.
Cathay corporate development director Tony Tyler said the company was disappointed by the vote, but added that contingency plans were in place and that flight disruptions were not expected. "Work-to-rule in itself need not result in any adverse impact to our customers. Contract compliance was in place from 1996 to 1999 and we maintained normal operations," he said.
Mr Tyler said talks on rostering continued and Cathay hoped they could be settled this summer, but argued that next Tuesday was an "unrealistic" goal. Cathay said that it understood the importance of rostering to pilots' lifestyles but that it had to balance that with passenger demands and "the need to maintain its long-term competitiveness". Cathay posted a $2.19 billion net profit for 1999.
He said: "If we do find that we're having trouble getting crew to operate the schedule, we have the option of rostering more crew on reserve."
He said Cathay could still give pilots the minimum number of guaranteed days off but swap some of their guaranteed days for stand-by duty, meaning they must be available for work.
Pilots claim the public perception that they are almost always having days off is misplaced; they say most of a five-day break between long-haul flights is spent jet-lagged. "My family sees me with bloodshot eyes, sleeping when my children are awake and awake when they're sleeping," lamented one.