Socialist Worker

Reject the rotten deal at BA, demand new strikes

by Sadie Robinson
Issue No. 2226

An appalling deal remains on the table at British Airways (BA). Yet the Unite union, and its cabin crew section Bassa, have not yet given cabin crew a chance to vote on the offer—or to discuss it collectively.

The new offer from bullying boss Willie Walsh is a surrender. It leaves job cuts in place, threatens to tear up all existing union agreements and fails to guarantee the return of workers’ staff travel discounts in full. The deal even sees Unite agreeing not to support suspended and sacked crew who want to take legal action against BA.

One cabin crew member told Socialist Worker, “The deal is absolutely shit. It gives nothing to all those workers who have already been sacked. I think it’s likely that people will vote against.

“Tony Woodley [joint general secretary of Unite] has said there will be an immediate ballot if crew reject the offer. In my opinion, we should have had a ballot ages ago.”

The vast majority of those discussing the offer on Bassa’s online forum oppose it. One said that crew should demand an emergency union meeting to discuss it—and claims to only need another 50 people to force Bassa to hold one.

Within days, more than that amount had backed the call on the forum.

If the unions refuse to call a meeting, workers can organise their own via the forum. They are right to want to meet together and discuss the offer.

They must organise to build the biggest no vote in the ballot—and demand their union ballots for fresh strikes.

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Article information

Tue 2 Nov 2010, 18:06 GMT
Issue No. 2226
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