Union baron prepares for bitter BA strike battle over thousands of job cuts
- More than 6,000 BA employees have applied for voluntary redundancy so far
- Unite and the GMB union have called for BA to drop its ‘fire and rehire’ proposals
Union boss Len McCluskey is gearing up for strike action against British Airways over thousands of job cuts.
More than 6,000 BA employees have applied for voluntary redundancy so far, with thousands more braced for enforced job losses as BA battles what it has described as the worst crisis in its history.
In a letter sent last week to members of the Unite union, McCluskey said: ‘It is for that reason that I have today instructed my teams to make preparations for industrial action. If BA think this ends when they either dismiss or force new terms on our members, then they do not know me or our union.’
More than 6,000 BA employees have applied for voluntary redundancy so far
Unite and the GMB union have called for BA to drop its ‘fire and rehire’ proposals which will reduce the pay and conditions of thousands of cabin crew, engineers and maintenance staff.
On Friday, BA began sending letters to staff to inform them of their fate in the plans to cut more than 10,000 jobs, including voluntary measures.
Employees will either be made redundant, keep their job but on lower pay, or remain on the same contract.
Pilots’ union Balpa reached a deal that mitigated job losses late last month. An industry insider said: ‘McCluskey’s mistake has been to treat the consultation process as a dispute – not as a crisis for the airline.’
A BA spokesman said: ‘We are having to make difficult decisions.’