MPs to join BA strikers

Unite BA strikersMPs will today join striking cabin crew from British Airways’ mixed fleet outside Parliament tomorrow .

The meeting coincides with the tabling of early day motion (EDM) by MPs expressing concern over low pay and British Airways penalising striking members of cabin crew. The EDM also raises concerns over the ‘wet leasing’ of aircraft by British Airways from Qatar Airways.

Today sees the twelfth day of a 16-day strike which finishing at midnight on Sunday 16 July. A further 14 day strike is scheduled to run from midnight on Wednesday 19 July 2017 to midnight on Tuesday 1 August 2017.

Unite national officer Oliver Richardson said: “Unite members working for British Airways’ mixed fleet will be taking their message to Parliament to seek the backing of MPs in their battle against poverty pay and punitive sanctions.

“There’s already been fantastic support from politicians who have grown increasingly concerned about the bullying and belligerent behaviour of our national carrier, British Airways.

“With support for the strike remaining strong and the chorus of concern growing, it’s time British Airways stopped spending millions on wet leasing aircraft to defend low pay and penalise its workers.

“We’d urge British Airways to heed the message of the MPs’ early day motion and negotiate a settlement to this long running dispute.”

As part of the dispute, Unite has launched legal action against the government’s decision to give the go-ahead to the ‘wet lease’ of nine Airbus aircraft by British Airways to cover striking cabin crew strike. The union argues that the lease of aircraft and cabin crew from Qatar Airways breaches European regulations.

Since 2010 all British Airways new cabin crew employees join what is called ‘mixed fleet’, where despite promises that pay would be 10 per cent above the market rate, basic pay starts at just £12,192 with £3 an hour flying pay. Unite estimates that on average ‘mixed fleet’ cabin crew earn £16,000, including allowances, a year.

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