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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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Last edit by: Tobias-UK
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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 25, 22, 10:36 am
  #196  
 
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Originally Posted by Agent69 View Post
But if BA are in breach of a legally binding agreement why don't employees seek a remedy via the courts rather than voting for industrial action?
Because:
- It appears to be a ‘good faith’ commitment to do something, probably not a binding term of the contract
- Even if it was binding, suing your employer is never a good look, it would take pretty brave crew to do this
- Even if someone did sue, they need their pay restored now to pay bills whilst inflation is running at 10%+ in the UK, not in 2023/2024 when the case is settled…
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Old Jun 25, 22, 11:15 am
  #197  
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Originally Posted by jmasgat View Post
--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.
Yes - they have their own check-in/gate/operations agents. Below the wing at T3 is done by somebody else (like Menzies or Swissport - not sure which one). Not sure who does below the wing for them at T5, but if memory serves BOS operates from T3.
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Old Jun 25, 22, 2:37 pm
  #198  
 
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Based on previous examples, how long does strike action tend to last with BA? So if it started (for example) on 22 July, how many days would it go on? And then in how many subsequent cycles?

I suppose its a 'how long is a piece of string' question, but interested to know how it has panned out in the past.
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Old Jun 25, 22, 2:57 pm
  #199  
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Originally Posted by DG55 View Post
Based on previous examples, how long does strike action tend to last with BA? So if it started (for example) on 22 July, how many days would it go on? And then in how many subsequent cycles?

I suppose its a 'how long is a piece of string' question, but interested to know how it has panned out in the past.
I do remember industrial action lasting for ages about 2010 and according to this it lasted over 2 years on and off.

Pay and perks were at the centre of the bitter dispute which has lasted for almost two years and involved 22 days of strikes.

https://www-bbc-com.cdn.ampproject.o...iness-13373638

Whereas the recent Pilot strike was resolved fairly quickly. Each 'strike' is of course unique to itself and I really do hope this one doesn't actually takes place but I feel it is inevitable.

At this point though I would agree and echo Tobias-UK point of view and wait until any dates are set then people can make plans for any alternative dates, rebooking etc and I'd be sure CWS will keep the Wiki updated
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Old Jun 25, 22, 5:07 pm
  #200  
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Stupid question but will this strike interfere with other airline's activity at LHR? We are flying Icelandair to LHR via KEF. Am I ever glad we didn't book BA. Still will this sort of industrial action cause delays and cancellations for other airlines into and out LHR?
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Old Jun 25, 22, 5:28 pm
  #201  
 
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Originally Posted by ijkh View Post
Stupid question but will this strike interfere with other airline's activity at LHR? We are flying Icelandair to LHR via KEF. Am I ever glad we didn't book BA. Still will this sort of industrial action cause delays and cancellations for other airlines into and out LHR?
Short answer - No.
If say BA were providing ground services to other airlines at LHR, then yes there could have been but they don’t, so no is the answer to that. I believe even IB will be moving away from using BA for their ground related activities at LHR soon, if they haven’t already.
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Old Jun 26, 22, 2:23 am
  #202  
 
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Originally Posted by PETER01 View Post
I do remember industrial action lasting for ages about 2010 and according to this it lasted over 2 years on and off.
Good (but scary!) to know it can last that long.

How long have individual strikes tended to last, eg similar to train/tube where it is one or two days here and there? Or are we looking at several days back to back (eg a week at a time).

Possibly stupid question here, just can’t remember how it’s worked in the past.
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Old Jul 1, 22, 7:41 am
  #203  
 
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Saw this on Twitter - not surprised!

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Old Jul 1, 22, 8:53 am
  #204  
 
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Originally Posted by salut0 View Post
Wish they’d announce the damn strike dates. Just booked backup Norwegian flight LGW-ARN the day before our BA LHR-ARN booking because I saw on expert flyer that BA were only selling JYB tickets for those two days which suggests they believe they’ll need the space for reaccomodation or because one or both days will be cancelled. Flights look empty on seatmap.

Felt a bit guilty taking up space on Norwegian but it’s a necessary insurance policy because prices are going up and up and there’s no reward space available on either day: if BA or the union would just announce the dates I wouldn’t be creating follow-on problems for other people by buying tickets I have no intention of using if I can avoid it…
So… our early morning LHR-ARN BA776 in a few weeks’ time has now been cancelled as I suspected it might be! Should I take a refund or rebook for the previous night? I have the Norwegian backup flight but I’d like the BA tier points and the easier trip to LHR rather than LGW. I suspect it’s a good idea to rebook rather than take a refund, and just in case to choose a BA flight for earlier on the previous day so I could get the later LGW-ARN on Norwegian if everything becomes really messed up? What do people think?

Extra info: we’re only going to ARN to pick up the Finnair flight ARN-JFK which is booked on an AA code (001 ticket). I assume there’s no chance that BA would be open to changing/combining the whole thing to LHR-JFK instead of {LHR-ARN(BA) followed by ARN-JFK(marketed by AA, operated by AY)} since the second ticket is separate?

Hotels in ARN seem quite cheap if it’s necessary, just a bit more hassle than ideally I wanted.

Last edited by salut0; Jul 1, 22 at 8:58 am
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Old Jul 1, 22, 9:26 am
  #205  
 
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Flying LHR to SFO on July 14- can I safely assume now in the clear since it’s 14 days out and no dates announced?
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Old Jul 1, 22, 9:30 am
  #206  
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Originally Posted by SFGuy37 View Post
Flying LHR to SFO on July 14- can I safely assume now in the clear since it’s 14 days out and no dates announced?
Yes 👍🏻
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Old Jul 2, 22, 1:09 am
  #207  
 
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Originally Posted by Tobias-UK View Post
Yes 👍🏻
Isn’t there still a (albeit remote) chance that the 14 day notice period could be waived by both sides?

Not suggesting this will happen or to cause more worry/confusion but until the strike dates are actually announced we don’t know anything with 100% certainty(?)
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Old Jul 2, 22, 1:30 am
  #208  
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Originally Posted by eh220160 View Post
Isn’t there still a (albeit remote) chance that the 14 day notice period could be waived by both sides?

Not suggesting this will happen or to cause more worry/confusion but until the strike dates are actually announced we don’t know anything with 100% certainty(?)
Do you think, even for just one second, that BA would agree to waive the notice period for a strike, a strike that would seriously affect its operations with all the expensive repercussions therefrom? I think we can safely say that we will have at least 14 days notice of any strike.

Hopefully there will be no strike and the parties can reach an agreement.
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Old Jul 2, 22, 1:41 am
  #209  
 
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Originally Posted by Tobias-UK View Post
Do you think, even for just one second, that BA would agree to waive the notice period for a strike, a strike that would seriously affect its operations with all the expensive repercussions therefrom? I think we can safely say that we will have at least 14 days notice of any strike.

Hopefully there will be no strike and the parties can reach an agreement.
I would have just thought that a strike during the UK state school holidays would be more damaging than a strike prior (15-17 Jul) - clearly neither is ideal and hopefully it never materialises…
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Old Jul 2, 22, 3:30 am
  #210  
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Originally Posted by eh220160 View Post
I would have just thought that a strike during the UK state school holidays would be more damaging than a strike prior (15-17 Jul) - clearly neither is ideal and hopefully it never materialises…
I think it's far more revealing that the Unions and BA are saying very little at this stage.
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