Union ‘yes’ vote threatens airport chaos – TravelMole true

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Union ‘yes’ vote threatens airport chaos

Tuesday, 13 Aug, 2010 0

Airports in the UK could be paralysed later this month after Unite members voted three to one in favour of strikes following what the union described as a ‘derisory’ one per cent pay offer.


Unite said it will meet its key representatives on Monday to decide what form that action will take. 


As the union must give seven days’ notice of industrial action, this means the earliest a strike could take place would be August 23.


BAA said any strike by firefighters, engineers, security guards and other key workers will force a total shutdown of its UK airports.

In a statement, BAA said: "We regret the uncertainty this vote has already caused our passengers and airline customers.

"We hope that the union will engage with us quickly to conclude an agreement.  Fewer than half of those people eligible to vote have done so and we do not believe this result provides a clear mandate for strike action."

Unite has already been slammed by travel firms for the ‘yes’ vote, which could lead to chaos at UK airports.

"As if air passengers haven’t had enough disruption this year with snow, ash clouds, BA strikes and general summer travel chaos, now today’s announcement by Unite of a mandate for strike action could well see BAA’s six airports practically paralysed by this latest strike action," said travelsupermarket.com travel analyst Bob Atkinson.

"Scotland could effectively be shutdown and services to the world’s busiest international airport, Heathrow, and Britain’s busiest low-cost hub, Stansted, could be halted.

"Although Unite has yet to reveal plans for disruption, striking during the busy holiday period, and possibly running into the Bank Holiday weekend, is really a double blow as it’s an incredibly busy time for both outbound and, more importantly, inbound passengers as people return from their summer breaks to go back to school and work.  

"Families already pay a premium to go away during the summer holidays, so any
disruption is likely to affect them the most."


 By Linsey McNeill





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Linsey McNeill

Editor Linsey McNeill has been writing about travel for more than three decades. Bylines include The Times, Telegraph, Observer, Guardian and Which? plus the South China Morning Post. She also shares insider tips on thetraveljournalist.co.uk

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