British Airways levied a harsh penalty against employees who participated in last weekend’s three-day strike—and sent a warning to those planning on striking this weekend as well—by permanently revoking their travel privileges. The U.K.’s Daily Mail reports that, “At present a 90 per cent discount on flight tickets is given to all BA staff and a selected group of family and friends whenever free seats are available. Staff who have worked at BA for more than five years also get free tickets to destinations covered by the airline’s fleet.”
British Airways had warned union members that these perks could be revoked. A British Airways spokesperson said, “‘Our cabin crew knew that if they took part in the strike they would lose their staff travel permanently,” and called staff travel “a non-contractual perk that the company can withdraw at its discretion.”
Unsurprisingly, Unite, the union behind the strike, had a different outlook, promising to “challenge this vindictive move in whatever way seems appropriate,” while Unite president Tony Woodley claimed staff travel is “custom and practice,” not a perk.
Well, this should make negotiations easier, huh?
As of now, there seems to be little chance that a deal will be reached before the next strike begins Saturday, so stay tuned for more drama leading up to and following the next go-round.