Following this week’s decision to hold a strike ballot among British Airway’s cabin staff, Unite is now holding talks with BA management aimed at averting a dispute with a second group of workers, check-in and customer service staff.
Officials from the Unite and GMB unions will meet airline management to discuss planned job losses and cost cutting.
Negotiations with the check-in staff ended without agreement in the summer and today’s meeting is being seen as an attempt to get those talks back on track.
Unions say BA wants to cut around 10% of the so-called A-scales staff, amounting to 1,000 jobs.
BA said chief executive Willie Walsh will lead the meeting and a spokesman added: “This follows the end of a cooling-off period with admin staff regarding pay and productivity talks.
National officer of Unite, Steve Turner, said there were fears that BA’s airport staff would be outsourced, rosters changed and a new, lower rate of pay introduced for new employees.
He also claimed that BA was looking to cut 1,250 jobs among that section of the workforce, including about 800 at Heathrow.
“It beggars belief that the airline would want to cause conflict with workers who are so customer-focused and proud of their jobs that it is just unacceptable,” Mr Turner told the BBC.