Brits To Face Summer Holiday Chaos As BA Workers At Heathrow Vote To Strike
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UK airports are set to descend into further chaos this summer as British Airways workers at Heathrow plan to strike.
The walkout is said to be over a 10 percent pay cut that was imposed on staff amid the pandemic, with 700 members – mostly check-in staff and ground crew – planning on taking part in the industrial action over the summer holidays.
Nadine Houghton, a spokesperson for GMB Union who represents the workers alongside Unite the Union, told the BBC that the industry is 'on its knees' with staff shortages, claiming the reason is due to employers like BA using the pandemic to 'unethically cut out members' pay and conditions'.
There's only one answer to the staff shortages causing chaos in our airports and that's for employers like @British_Airways to pay their staff properly.— GMB Union (@GMB_union) June 23, 2022
GMB's Nadine Houghton spoke to BBC News ahead of the result of our strike ballot, due at 2pm today. pic.twitter.com/zv4dSk5kUX
In a separate statement, she said: "With grim predictability, holidaymakers face massive disruption thanks to the pig-headedness of British Airways.
"BA have tried to offer our members crumbs from the table in the form of a 10 per cent one-off bonus payment, but this doesn't cut the mustard.
"Our members need to be reinstated the 10 per cent they had stolen from them last year with full back pay and the 10 per cent bonus which other colleagues have been paid.
"GMB members at Heathrow have suffered untold abuse as they deal with the travel chaos caused by staff shortages and IT failures.
"At the same time, they've had their pay slashed during BA's callous fire and rehire policy. What did BA think was going to happen?"
The news arrives as the UK's airports buckle under the pressure of Covid-related staff shortages, with delayed flights, huge queues and lost luggage causing chaotic scenes in recent weeks.