Published on Tuesday, January 10, 2017
A trade union claims it has seen a surge in membership from British Airways' cabin crew since the start of a dispute over pay, which has led to this morning's walk-out at Heathrow.
Unite said that more than 800 additional 'mixed fleet' crew have joined, taking its membership to over 2,900.
The union has called a 48-hour strike, starting today, after failing to reach a new pay deal for the crew, all of whom have joined the airline since 2010.
Unite national officer Oliver Richardson said: "More and more 'mixed fleet' cabin crew have joined Unite as this dispute over poverty pay has gone on.
"Increasingly tired of delivering a first class service for poverty pay, 'mixed fleet' cabin crew are at breaking point over pay levels which are forcing many of them to take a second job or turn up to work unfit to fly."
The union claimed the crew had been promised they would be paid 10% above market rate, but in fact their basic salary starts at £12,192 with £3 an hour flying pay. Unite estimates they earn on average £16,000 a year, including allowances.
Meanwhile, BA has been forced to consolidate a number of flights at Heathrow today and tomorrow due to the strike, meaning some passengers will fly earlier or later than planned. However, it promised all passengers will reach their destinations.
The strike does not affect flights from Gatwick or London City.
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