10 DECEMBER 2018


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Article from BTNews 10 DECEMBER 2018

Virgin dismisses strike threat

The threat of industrial unrest looming over Virgin Atlantic at Christmas was dismissed by the airline at the weekend as British Airways also faced the prospect of fresh problems with pilots and cabin crew.

Virgin posted a message on its website saying: “A small group of pilots (16%) have voted to strike, however all of our customers will be able to complete their journeys this Christmas as planned – this is our absolute priority.”

The pilots have voted to strike from 22-25 December over what they say is the airline’s refusal to recognise their union, the Professional Pilots Union (PPU). Officials said the union had also been excluded from talks about changes to benefits.

At BA, there is renewed industrial tension after the British Airline Pilots’ Association (Balpa) joined forces with cabin crew and ground staff unions Unite and GMB to submit a joint pay claim.

They want improvements in the carrier’s financial results to be reflected as well as enhanced profit-sharing arrangements for staff and the introduction of an employee share ownership scheme.

The unions – noting BA had gone from a £230m operating loss in 2009 to a £1.8bn profit in 2017, “with an even better result forecast for 2018” – said negotiations are scheduled to begin this month.



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