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British Airways places all managers on furlough from Monday

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British Airways has announced additional measures today to conserve revenue in the face of continued Government restrictions on outbound travel.

From next Monday, according to an email sent to staff today by Mel Birch, BA’s Director of Heathrow, ALL managerial staff at Heathrow (including, ironically, Birch herself) will be placed on full or flexi furlough.

It has since emerged that ALL British Airways managerial staff, whether they work at Heathrow or not, are in the same position.

Staff have also been told that all British Airways projects at Heathrow will be halted as part of a need to conserve cash unless:

  • they “deliver instant revenue”
  • deliver cost savings
  • are operationally critical

“Everything else will be stopped” according to the email circulated this morning.

Heathrow employees working ‘on the floor’ have been given an email address and telephone number to contact if they need to speak to a manager from Monday.

In a statement to HfP, British Airways said:

“Like many companies we’re using the furlough scheme to protect jobs during this unprecedented crisis. However, it’s vital the Government follows its risk-based framework to re-open international travel as soon as possible, putting more low-risk countries, like the US, on its green list at the next available opportunity.”

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Comments (86)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Mary says:

    Covid is with us now no matter what but people have the right to choice. Travel with a test or vaccine should be permitted . If you do not want to have the vaccine or take a test that is your choice but you will not travel and should not travel. That is the choice. I want to travel and am getting vaccinated for my safety that’s my choice, the government should be giving people this choice and not controlling us all. They have not done their best in this and we now have to learn to live in this new world.

    • Nick says:

      It’s not all about you and your individual freedoms though. People travelling take virus with them, which they then spread through the population. It’s happened countless times in the last year – just look at what happened recently to Bolton. Until that risk is minimised, the government is placing controls on those individual freedoms to protect society. That’s exactly their job.

      If everyone returning to the UK actually did sit at home for two weeks when they got back then it wouldn’t be necessary. But the same selfish people who are determined to use their right to travel are the same who think it’s their right to live a totally normal life when they get back, all without thinking of other people. There were people saying exactly the same at the time the Bolton chaos started and yet it’s now abundantly clear this was caused by people bringing it in from overseas.

      Whether we like it or not, the government has responded to the needs of the majority – remember that these restrictions on ‘rich people travelling’ are incredibly popular with the population at large, however much you or the travel industry don’t like them.

      • Nick Booker says:

        One of my jobs is Covid compliance for a local authority, working with businesses rather than being a big stick approach. The majority have been brilliant, when told for example they cannot have seating indoors (pre unlocking) ensuring ventilation is adequate etc etc. Like everything there is a small core who think it doesnt apply to them, stick 2 fingers up at the system. As long as we have idiots like that we will not get a grip on things properly

        • Chris says:

          No, as long as we have state power worshippers like the two Nicks above, we will have to endure this forever. Who cares whether the various restrictions are supposedly “popular”. The Iraq war was popular at the outset, but that didn’t make it right.

          After an enormous, well funded campaign by the Government and state to scare people into submission and irrationality, is it any wonder much of the population seem to be a quivering wreck and begging for hundreds of years of hard won freedoms so they can feel a bit safer over a virus which has a very small percentage chance of causing serious illness or death, especially after vacination.

          The coronavirus has become endemic and will always be with us in various forms / mutations. Therefore, unless we resist the likes of Nick, Nick Booker and those who would have us obediently locked away or restricted forever, then I suggest more speak up and resist the nasty slur that anyone who doesn’t want to be part of this wholly untried, untested illiberal experiment with our lives, health, jobs and society is somehow selfish.

      • Track says:

        Point 1. Under no circumstances a government should “place controls” on enumerated individual freedoms. This is a bedrock of the US constitutional law.

        Point 2. It is an evolutionary process of the virus to spread, it is not possible to contain different variants unless you halt the movement of people (including say trucks and supply chain). This coronavirus is now with us for a decade and there will be continuous situations of localised episodes in one area then another.

  • MQ says:

    I doubt the board of directors, CEO, CFO, COO are voluntarily working for FREE.

    • Bagoly says:

      You are almost certainly right.
      In the view from the Executive Suite they are no doubt “operationally critical”.

    • Rob says:

      Those people normally work for de facto free anyway. 70% of income is usually bonuses and/or share options. My base salary in my banking days was 5% of my annual income.

      • Andy says:

        The word “free” doing a lot of heavy lifting there Rob

        • Nick says:

          BA also confirmed yesterday that there will be no bonus this year. That’s one of the reasons the CCO walked. I do wonder if they’ll do something ‘creative’ with long-term options for the directors, it’s now 3 years in a row that none has been paid.

        • Chrisasaurus says:

          I’d work for that definition of free!

      • Track says:

        Those days are long gone, Rob.

        FCA pretty much limits any bonus to 100% of the base salary. There was a recent story of a US executive in a big investment bank (some number 2 in the bank they say) preferring to base in London because the company must pay compensation in cash now, rather than in deferred shares. Looks like Andrea Orcel missed the trick by acquiring his bonus in Switzerland..

        In the industry too, in big established companies (where top managers are not founders) those bonus schemes are not as generous as they were.

        • Rob says:

          I meant shares and share options for people who work in ‘real companies’. No self respecting banker would take shares, obviously!

  • peter says:

    Nothing major stops people from going on holidays to Amber countries.
    There are some disadvantages like £50 tests (2&8 = £100, on departure £50 and possibly day 5 release £50) so about £200 extra, and for those who cannot work remotely – additional 5 days of holidays during quarantine. Insurance issues, risk of being stuck abroad if you catch Covid.. but if you desperate to go, you’re allowed, and I think that’s fair.

  • Nick says:

    It works for anything processed through a MID registered to regent st stores.

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