BA boss: lay off and rehire “off the table” staff


Image copyright

British Airways’ plans to get rid of the cabin crew and rehire them on lower terms is now “out of the question”, said boss Alex Cruz.

Unions and lawmakers had accused the airline of following a “layoff and rehire” policy, which saw some employees face pay cuts of up to 50%.

Addressing the deputies of the special transport committee, Mr. Cruz said “it will not be necessary to issue new contracts”.

BA reached the outline of an employment deal with the Unite union last week.

The couple have been in a heated dispute over BA’s plans to cut as many as 13,000 jobs and cut wages amid the collapse in demand for air travel in the pandemic.

Mr Cruz said it was “unfortunate” that it took 73 days for BA’s non-pilot unions to sit down and negotiate.

But Labor MP Sam Tarry replied: ‘I would say if you hadn’t put a metaphorical gun to their heads, maybe it wouldn’t have happened. “

Media playback is not supported on your device
Media legendBA staff facing layoffs or pay cuts speak out

Mr Cruz said the airline would now follow the “standard methodology” of union agreements and make changes to existing contracts.

Details are still being worked out and some staff members’ votes have yet to take place.

Long-time cabin crew members face a 15% pay cut, while hoping to retain many of the allowances that are a significant part of their overall compensation.

“We have made agreements in a majority of areas,” said Cruz.

“We very much hope that the outcome of the ballots will be to accept these ballots. “

‘Devastated business’

Regarding whether or not BA will have to lay off 13,000 employees, Cruz said the company “does not need to reach that number”.

However, a large number of longtime cabin crew members agreed to the voluntary termination, and many staff members felt the terms offered at the time meant it was their only choice.

Mr Cruz told MPs the pandemic had “devastated our business … and we are still fighting for our own survival.”

Last week, the airline carried around 187,000 passengers, or about 25 to 30 percent of its regular flight schedule.

“Everyone is faced with decisions that we never wanted to face,” said Cruz.

He said he suffered a 33% pay cut during the pandemic, reducing his salary from the £ 805,000 he earned in 2019.

But he declined to comment on a £ 833,000 bonus paid to outgoing BA parent company boss Willie Walsh.

IAG has faced a backlash from shareholders over this payment to Mr. Walsh who left the company last week.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here