Cathay Pacific Airways` staff registered strong support for the company by joining the Special Leave Scheme (SLS). More than 99 percent of ground staff and more then 90 percent of flying crews had signed up by the time the official enrolment period wrapped up at midnight on Friday.
Most people who have yet to respond are either on vacation or extended leave and have not been able to access the airline`s computer system. They will be given an opportunity to join the scheme upon their return.
The company Chairman, Chief Executive and all Directors have joined.
The SLS is one of many measures being taken by the company to conserve cash and help preserve jobs. All staff were asked to accept the “Less Work, Less Pay” arrangement whereby individuals will take four weeks` unpaid leave between June and September. Benefits will not be affected during this period.
Staff in ports also reported similarly strong support for the scheme, which has been endorsed by employment groups and unions.
To help ease any financial burden caused by working four weeks less, salaries will be reduced over a six-month period. The company has also arranged low-interest loans for Hong Kong staff with The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation that staff will be able to repay over 18 months.
Cathay Pacific Director Personnel William Chau said: “I would like to thank everyone who has joined the scheme. It is heartening that staff have responded so well to support the company and each other. This is a vital contribution in the company`s efforts to conserve cash, and a demonstration of their determination to pull together.”