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BA ground staff at LHR: Summer '22 strike threat suspended after deal agreed

BA ground staff at LHR: Summer '22 strike threat suspended after deal agreed

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Old Jul 8, 22, 5:28 pm   -   Wikipost
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LATEST UPDATE: 7 July 2022

British Airway's employed ground staff, based mainly at LHR. have voted in favour of strike action in respect of a dispute relating to pay and conditions. This strike ballot is valid for 6 months, and allows the unions to nominate strike dates, provided the employer has 2 weeks notice of the strike. The general tendency in the UK is for relatively short strike dates, typically a day or two, but several of them separate by several days.

Updated: 7 July/2022, no strike dates have been provided and an agreement in principle has been reached with the Unions. Two weeks notice must be provided by the unions. This means there will be no strikes before 21 July 2022. However though the ballot is valid 6 months, the first strike needs to be within 4 weeks, which is 23 July 2022. This can extended by a further 4 weeks if the employer agrees, for example to facilitate a ballot of the agreement. So that suggests there won't be a strike in July and there may well be no strikes at all for this employment group.

Those involved in this strike are check-in staff, baggage handlers, lounge staff, gate agents, some turnaround managers, and related airport staff. Cabin and flight crew are not in this dispute. LGW and LCY flights are not in this dispute. Contract ground agents - at LHR and out stations - are also not involved. Some roles can be performed by management, but it is unlikely that core activties at LHR Terminal 3 and Terminal 5 can avoid significant disruption. If flights are disrupted by strkes then usually BA allows people to move their flights to alternative dates and other arrangements (e.g. rebooking on AA). There is a separate dispute being worked through involving call centre staff and engineers, but there is no ballot at this point, so any strike is some way off.




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Old Jun 24, 22, 6:09 am
  #151  
 
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Originally Posted by lost_in_translation View Post
It's also a free market for summer holidays, unless you're suggesting changing employer is easier than changing your summer holiday plans...
Changing jobs prob is easier for many
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Old Jun 24, 22, 6:12 am
  #152  
 
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Originally Posted by Joeykins View Post
Leave and go where mate? These people have bills to pay, families to support. The power balance between employer and employee is inherently skewed towards the employer unless one is fortunate enough to be in a position where the mortgage is paid in full, the dependents have moved out of the house, and there's sufficient savings in the bank that one can simply walk out without consequence. For the vast majority of people in this country that is not the case, and it's only the combination of employment law and the risk of union action acting as a bulwark against the worst excesses of boardrooms across the country who are incentivised to drive down wages minimise bottom line expenditure in order to maximise the share price and trigger their own inventive payouts.
The fact that the union ballot is overwhelmingly in favour of strike action suggests that this is not childish at all but is either a colossal example of groupthink in action, or (vastly more likely IMO) a genuine sense of injustice amongst the workers upon whose labour the business depends.
If you think that your holiday is more important than the ground staff having to choose between feeding their kids and heating their homes this winter then I don't know what to say to you.
You know a key reason we have low unemployment in this country is due to the flexible labour market. If you don't like your job, go and interview elsewhere. Lots of BA staff learnt this during the pandemic...

Healthy labour markets and free business is based on competition, choice and flexibility. Unions are just bullies who wait until the time to screw people over comes and then go on strike. They dont create anything, they dont invest in anything, they just take take take.
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Old Jun 24, 22, 6:19 am
  #153  
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Originally Posted by JackDann View Post
I've just double checked this (Not after a couple of pints) and I was right, there is not a single reward flight available for the whole of June. Extremely annoying! Still reward availability on EI although extortionate Taxes and Fee's.
In July I wouldn't be surprised, this happens every year there isn't a pandemic on. But there is availability to LCY and some CE availability to LHR (e.g. 14 July). Typically on that route more availability will show up if flights are not full in the 2 - 3 days before departure, but at the moment flights are operating close to 100% full.
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Old Jun 24, 22, 6:55 am
  #154  
 
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Originally Posted by PGberkshire View Post
And its a free market, leave, dont blackmail / hold to ransom (and ruin peoples holidays) - childish behaviour

the free labour market speaks for itself
What a load of right-wing Daily Mail tosh! If it were entirely down to the “free market” we’d still have slavery and child labour. Labour laws in the UK are heavily skewed towards the employer as it is.

Obviously we all hope for an amicable solution and movement from both sides on this issue, but if all 700 did as you childishly suggest and leave BA there will even more ruined holidays and damage for BA.
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Old Jun 24, 22, 7:12 am
  #155  
 
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Originally Posted by PGberkshire View Post
You know a key reason we have low unemployment in this country is due to the flexible labour market. If you don't like your job, go and interview elsewhere. Lots of BA staff learnt this during the pandemic...

Healthy labour markets and free business is based on competition, choice and flexibility. Unions are just bullies who wait until the time to screw people over comes and then go on strike. They dont create anything, they dont invest in anything, they just take take take.
Unbelievably privileged take. Where's the dislike button?

I'm not exactly what you call pro-union but I find it highly ironic that you say unions are just bullies. I forgot BA was the victim here, massively ramping up fares to take advantage of the insane demand this year, while also witholding pay from staff at the same time. And no, a 10% one off payment is not even close to good enough, that should be a bonus on top of their original wage for having to take up the slack post axe swinging.

Staff who've been good enough to stay loyal, or forced to stay with BA because they have no other options are essentially almost 20% worse off in real terms than they were in 2019. That is ridiculous.
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Old Jun 24, 22, 7:17 am
  #156  
 
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Originally Posted by PGberkshire View Post
Lots of BA staff learnt this during the pandemic...
was this before or after furlough, or was it before or after the fire and rehire cruz et al. executed?
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Old Jun 24, 22, 7:24 am
  #157  
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Originally Posted by PGberkshire View Post
You know a key reason we have low unemployment in this country is due to the flexible labour market. If you don't like your job, go and interview elsewhere. Lots of BA staff learnt this during the pandemic...

Healthy labour markets and free business is based on competition, choice and flexibility. Unions are just bullies who wait until the time to screw people over comes and then go on strike. They dont create anything, they dont invest in anything, they just take take take.
Yeah - why should somebody getting a 10% pay cut disrupt your champagne quaffing holiday flights. The selfish gits.
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Old Jun 24, 22, 7:31 am
  #158  
 
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Originally Posted by PGberkshire View Post
You know a key reason we have low unemployment in this country is due to the flexible labour market. If you don't like your job, go and interview elsewhere. Lots of BA staff learnt this during the pandemic...

Healthy labour markets and free business is based on competition, choice and flexibility. Unions are just bullies who wait until the time to screw people over comes and then go on strike. They dont create anything, they dont invest in anything, they just take take take.
That's an interesting view. But not all unions are the same. Take UK ATC for instance. No strikes since the late 70s, a near 100% membership rate but a reasonably well paid workforce with good T&C's. None of that happens because the employer is a charity, but through pragmatic and well reasoned negotiations. Their skills are, in the main not transferable. But in many cases it is the union expertise that adds value to a higher management that nowadays is completely out of touch with the the task involved but knows the cost of everything and the value of nothing.
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Old Jun 24, 22, 8:06 am
  #159  
 
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Originally Posted by PGberkshire View Post
You know a key reason we have low unemployment in this country is due to the flexible labour market. If you don't like your job, go and interview elsewhere. Lots of BA staff learnt this during the pandemic...

Healthy labour markets and free business is based on competition, choice and flexibility. Unions are just bullies who wait until the time to screw people over comes and then go on strike. They dont create anything, they dont invest in anything, they just take take take.
Nonsense.

Other "less flexible" economies like France, Germany and Italy are also running near full employment right now.

The threat of industrial action is IMHO due to BA exercising it's "flexibility" during the pandemic and the poorly-treated employees exercising their "flexibility" now the tables are turned.

I will turn your arguments around. In a free economy where you suddenly need additional staff to cope with increased demand, the usual path would be to increase or otherwise improve the package offered to existing and new employees. Now, how about careful planning for that in advance so that those poorly-treated staff are not also expected to put in extra shifts and longer hours. This situation was certain to result in industrial unrest and I suspect the package BA will end up giving these staff will cost more than if they'd just been open, fair and honest in the first place. Why does BA always do things this way, regardless of who is CEO this week?
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Old Jun 24, 22, 9:08 am
  #160  
 
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Low unemployment is also part of the reason BA (and the airports, in fairness) find themselves short staffed. Quite simply, people are not interested in working for them and the compensation on offer will be a huge factor in that. There is better available elsewhere.

I have seen moans from airlines about Brexit reducing their candidate pool. This is true, it has to be said, but I fear what they really mean is "we can't just hire people from poorer countries that will take low wages now".

Last edited by Bohinjska Bistrica; Jun 24, 22 at 9:14 am
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Old Jun 24, 22, 9:36 am
  #161  
 
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Originally Posted by PGberkshire View Post
They dont create anything, they dont invest in anything, they just take take take.
You describing BA's upper management?
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Old Jun 24, 22, 9:44 am
  #162  
 
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Okay. My first time ever flying BA. Ha! We are due to return (VCE-LHR-BOS) on July 23/24 (evening flight to LHR, overnight at airport, LHR-BOS in a.m. of the 24th), which is squarely in the bullseye of possible strike target dates. I'm trying to just be prepared & understand my options in the event of a strike Already plan to do carry-on only. So two questions:
--Does American Airlines have its own ground staff at Heathrow? There is an AA LHR-BOS flight that leaves at the same time, and would jump on that if we could.
--We are flying Business Class. If our BA flight to BOS still goes out (I have read elsewhere that long haul flights are ones that they try to maintain), then does anyone think this would be helpful in avoiding the inevitable check-in carnage?

ETA: Just checked my booking and BA canceled my VCE to LHR flight and didn't book me any replacement! Wow, they suck (apparently no business class flights available on the next earlier flight).

Last edited by jmasgat; Jun 24, 22 at 11:47 am
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Old Jun 24, 22, 9:52 am
  #163  
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Originally Posted by jmasgat View Post
Okay. My first time ever flying BA. Ha! We are due to return (VCE-LHR-BOS) on July 23/24 (evening flight to LHR, overnight at airport, LHR-BOS in a.m. of the 24th), which is squarely in the bullseye of possible strike target dates. I'm trying to just be prepared & understand my options in the event of a strike Already plan to do carry-on only. So two questions:
--Does American Airlines have its own ground staff at Heathrow? There is an AA LHR-BOS flight that leaves at the same time, and would jump on that if we could.
--We are flying Business Class. If our BA flight to BOS still goes out (I have read elsewhere that long haul flights are ones that they try to maintain), then does anyone think this would be helpful in avoiding the inevitable check-in carnage?
Until any strike dates are announced I wouldn’t give it a second thought. You’ll have at least 14 days notice for any strike dates so plenty time to work on contingency planning. There may not even be a strike!
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Old Jun 24, 22, 12:26 pm
  #164  
 
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corporate-wage-slave I thought the 10% is only a bonus but the strike is because they are not returning to the pre pandemic salaries that they were promised. What fool allows a company to get £4bn in debt!!!
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Old Jun 24, 22, 1:05 pm
  #165  
 
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Originally Posted by flybymonkey View Post
corporate-wage-slave I thought the 10% is only a bonus but the strike is because they are not returning to the pre pandemic salaries that they were promised. What fool allows a company to get £4bn in debt!!!
2 Billion of that is according to the union BA's proportion of IAG debt
The rest is pandemic losses
I'm surprised it's not bigger tbh
The strikers demand is to restore a 10% pay cut implimented during that loss making 18 months
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Last edited by Earthman; Jun 25, 22 at 6:17 am
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