BA cabin crew vote in support of further strikes

BA cabin crew vote in support of further strikes

British Airways cabin crew have voted in support of industrial action by an overwhelming majority, according to the union Unite.

The union said the turnout in the ballot was 75 percent, while the majority of those voting for industrial action was 78.5 percent.

The union balloted 10,220 cabin crew staff, 7,330 of whom returned valid papers.

Officials said the size of the turnout and the big majority in favour of industrial action showed the continuing anger and determination of the workers.

Earlier, Mr McCluskey said: “If the company believes they have broken the spirit of the cabin crew, they should have been at this meeting to witness the anger of people.”

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The ballot started on December 21 after hopes of a negotiated settlement to the deadlocked row collapsed despite months of talks.

Unite said the ballot was over a number of outstanding issues, including the immediate restoration of staff travel concessions.

Unite general secretary-designate Len McCluskey said: “For the fourth time in 13 months British Airways cabin crew have voted overwhelmingly in support of their union and expressed their dissatisfaction with management behaviour.  Indeed, the turnout and the majority on this occasion are much greater than in the last ballot.”
BA has pledged to run a full long haul service if there are any fresh strikes.

The Unite dispute, originally over job cuts, has already cost BA £150m and led to 22 days of strikes.

The dispute began in November 2009, when BA cut the number of cabin crew staff on long-haul flights from 15 to 14, and introduced a two-year pay freeze from 2010.

However, the most recent ballot was in protest against the removal of travel perks from staff who went on strike last year.