UK: BA pay offer rejected by cabin crew

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British Airways has had its ‘final’ pay offer to Unite union members rejected in a ballot which saw just under half of the eligible 11 000 voters participate. This was less than the 70% who took part in previous votes and prompted BA to express their satisfaction that ‘73% of our cabin crew did not reject the offer.’

For their part, Unite called for further talks while not discounting the possibility of future strike action. The dispute originally centred on cabin crew reductions and escalated after travel concessions for striking employees were taken away. Cabin crew had been offered a rise of 2.9% in 2011 and 3.0% in 2012, as well as assurances that staff who had gone on strike will not be ‘victimised’; a partial-reinstatement of travel perks and the possibility of work at Gatwick airport being increased.

The Bassa branch of Unite, which represents cabin crew, had welcomed the pay offer, but criticised the withdrawal of additional benefits from staff involved in industrial action of staff travel discounts which accrue according to length of service. Bassa had also highlighted the ‘vastly reduced’ terms and conditions for new joiners and continuing redundancies.