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Annie Hayes



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BA strike suspended


Threatened strike action against British Airways (BA) was averted over the weekend.

The bank holiday strikes would have created chaos at major airports including Heathrow, Gatwick, Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow and Edinburgh.

The unions, TGWU and GMB representing BA baggage handlers, check-in agents and ground staff have agreed to a back-dated 8.5% pay increase over three years and non-pensionable lump sum payments of £1000 to be made over the period of a year.

The agreement with the unions, together with Amicus is subjection to consultation with their members.

Mike Street, BA director of customer service and operations, said: “I am delighted our customers can now look forward to their holidays without fear of strike action.”

The deal is to include the immediate introduction of an absence policy. The scheme is aimed at reducing soaring absence levels from 17 days per employee to 10 days per employee within 12 months.

Street said: “The new agreed policy on absence is tough on those persistently absent while remaining compassionate towards the genuinely sick.

“We can afford this three year deal because of the new absence policy, which we estimate will save British Airways £30 million a year.”

Speaking to HRZone, Ben Willmott of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development commented:

“There is nothing wrong with attendance incentives schemes as long as they are part of a managed and co-ordinated approach to reducing absence levels and are not seen as a solution in themselves.

“One of the challenges of managing attendance incentive schemes is to ensure that they don’t penalise individuals who have genuine health problems and they don’t effectively discriminate against any employee, for example on the basis of disability.”

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Annie Hayes


Read more from Annie Hayes

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