British Airways strike: BA staff vote to strike over pay

British Airways workers based at Heathrow have voted in favour of strikes in a dispute over pay, the GMB and Unite unions announced.

Unite and GMB union members who are mostly check-in staff and ground crew backed industrial action.

A total of 700 workers are set to walkout during the summer holidays, when demand from travellers is expected to return to pre-pandemic levels.

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British Airways workers based at Heathrow have voted in favour of strikes in a dispute over pay, the GMB and Unite unions announced.

It is understood if the strike goes ahead BA has plans to cover staff, including managers potentially dealing with check-ins.

Nadine Houghton, GMB national officer, 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% one-off bonus payment, but this doesn’t cut the mustard.

“Our members need to be reinstated the 10% they had stolen from them last year with full back pay and the 10% 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?

“It’s not too late to save the summer holidays – other BA workers have had their pay cuts reversed.

“Do the same for ground and check-in staff and this industrial action can be nipped in the bud.”

Unite officer Russ Ball said: “The problems British Airways is facing are entirely of its own making. It brutally cut jobs and pay during the pandemic even though the Government was paying them to save jobs.

“In the case of this dispute, they have insulted this workforce, slashing pay by 10% only to restore it to managers but not to our members.

“BA is treating its loyal workforce as second class citizens and they will not put up with it a moment longer.

“Strike action will inevitably cause severe disruption to BA’s services at Heathrow.

“The company has a short window of opportunity to reinstate our members’ pay before strikes are called. I urge BA not to squander that opportunity.”