Citing “poverty pay,” members of British Airways “mixed” fleet have started a three-day walkout. They are also threatening to continue the strike for another three days starting Thursday.
The “mixed” crew includes all cabin employees who have joined the airline since 2010, who serve long- and short-haul flights. Pay for the mixed fleet starts at £12,000 (approximately $15,000), but most earn around £21,000 ($26,000) when factoring in bonuses and flying time. British Airways claims no one makes less than £21,000.
British Airways, which has issued strict sanctions on crew members participating in walkouts, anticipates most of the 2,300 flight attendants in the mixed fleet will show up for work. British Airways has threatened to eliminate all travel discounts for anyone entering the action, as well as docking workers two years’ worth of bonuses.
This is the third time in two weeks the crew is striking. A two-day strike and another three-day one in January forced the airline to cancel 68 flights.
The airline anticipates little disruption of travel schedules.
“This will mean some customers will travel slightly earlier or later in the day than originally booked. We are contacting those customers with the options available to them,” said a spokesperson, according to an article in The Standard.
What’s more, said the spokesman, the pay is consistent with other deals secured by the airline.
“Our pay offer for mixed fleet cabin crew is consistent with deals agreed with more than 90 per cent of British Airways colleagues, including many Unite members.
“The offer also reflects pay awards given by other companies in the UK and will ensure that rewards for mixed fleet remain in line with those for cabin crew at our airline competitors.”
Unite, the union representing the mixed fleet, said that British Airways should “start valuing staff who contribute massively to the billions of pounds in profits the airline generates.”
The current strike is scheduled to last through Tuesday, February 7; the second three-day phase will commence on Thursday and run through Saturday, February 13.
- originally published in Travel Pulse News by MONICA POLING FEBRUARY 05, 2017
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