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British Airways check-in staff strikes scrapped as airline makes ‘vastly improved’ pay offer

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According to a statement on the Unite union website, the industrial dispute between British Airways and its check-in staff at Heathrow has been suspended.

The airline has made a “vastly improved” pay offer to staff.

Whilst the offer will be put to a ballot of union members, the union is recommending acceptance. Planned strike action has been suspended.

British Airways check in

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said:

We welcome that BA has finally listened to the voice of its check-in staff. Unite has repeatedly warned that pay disputes at BA were inevitable unless the company took our members’ legitimate grievances seriously. I pay tribute to, and stand with, our members who have fought hard to protect their pay.”

Unite regional officer Russ Ball said:

“I want to salute the solidarity and bravery of our members, who, through acting in unity, have ensured that a vastly improved offer has been made. I am proud to be associated with our check-in members at British Airways.”

A BA spokesperson said:

“We are very pleased that, following collaboration with the unions, they have decided not to issue dates for industrial action. This is great news for our customers and our people.”

The strike had been caused by the refusal of the airline to reverse a 10% pay cut which check-in staff had accepted during the pandemic in order to help control cash burn. British Airways management who agreed a similar cut had seen it reversed but this privilege was not extended to rank-and-file workers.

It is not clear if this deal will see the full 10% pay cut reversed (staff will still not have received a pay rise this year, of course) and over what time frame this may happen.

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Comments (19)

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

  • Harry T says:

    Great news! It’s contemptible that it took the threat of strike action to get BA to treat their check in staff fairly.

  • 1ATL says:

    Just the baggage handlers to sort out now…

    • Thywillbedone says:

      You forgot the fuel loading guys …I’m thinking of making a spreadsheet …

      • Super Secret Stuff says:

        I thought fuel handling was handled by either the ket fuel seller or contracted out?

  • AJA says:

    The right result assuming the offer is decent. Sad that it took the threat of strikes to bring a change of heart with BA management but also good that both sides actually negotiated and compromised.

  • Tom says:

    So in real terms the staff are now basically 10% down rather than 20%. I guess it’s better than nothing and good to see constructive negotiation but BA management still leave a bitter taste in my mouth. It’s really not that difficult to ensure your staff are paid fairly. The airline still has so far to go given inept Cruz’s era of destroying all credibility through terribly judged policies which are clearly still rearing their ugly head. Had Cruz not been in charge I have no doubt the airline would financially be in a superior position.

    • Tom says:

      It’s also why we are booking most of our EU corporate economy flights through EasyJet because there is objectively no difference whatsoever in terms of the service received from either. BA if anything have been worse in terms of cancellations and other problems with baggage.

      • J says:

        EasyJet are a disaster recently in my experience. Ryanair all the way for me.

        • Erico1875 says:

          I agree. Ryanair seem to have handled Post COVID so much better than the rest.

        • John says:

          Could they possibly be worse than Wizz Air UK? We ended up stranded in Slovenia for 5 additional nights owing to consecutive cancellations.

      • Mikeact says:

        And the rest…and Long Haul ? And I assume you are talking about your employees….they happy too ? Let me guess …they are 100% happy…not.

        • Rob says:

          Until easyJet open a private check in wing and dedicated security which feeds directly into a First Class lounge, I think I’ll stick with BA for short haul ….

    • Super Secret Stuff says:

      I knew someone that worked at check in a few years ago. They were on very decent packages pre covid. With cost of living increases and there pay returning the majority should be ok. Just means they can’t live the same life style they did before.

      Should they get a real terms pay rise? I think they should as I think and indeed the person I know thinks the general public are awful so they put up with a lot of abuse.

  • masaccio says:

    It’s behaviour like this that does make me question my investment in IAG. Still, I did it with a 5 year view

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