Britain’s largest union, Unite, accused Japan Airlines of needlessly provoking industrial action today (Friday 9 January), as cabin crew working on the airline’s highly profitable Heathrow route served notice of their intention to ballot for strike in a dispute over pay.
The strike ballot follows Japan Airline’s point blank refusal to discuss Unite’s proposals to resolve the dispute. The proposals, costing just under £2,000 more than Japan Airline’s offer, have been rebuffed by the airline which is instead seeking to impose a freeze in basic pay for long serving cabin crew.
The company’s pay offer, rejected by over 82 per cent of cabin crew sees long serving crew at the top of the pay scale getting no pay rise, other than a £96 a year increase in London weighting. The lowest paid crew, on a basic wage of £9,000 a year, will only see their basic pay increase by £285 a year.
The ballot closes on Friday 6 February.
Commenting, Unite regional officer Simon McCartney said: “Japan Airlines posted profits of just over £1 billion last year and is on track for another successful year, so it can well afford the sum it will take to settle this dispute.
“Instead management at its Heathrow hub seem hell-bent on provoking strike action. The imposition of this pay deal on cabin crew who helped turn the airline’s fortunes around is an insult and it is highly likely that they will back strike action.
“Japan Airline management need to see sense and get back around the negotiating table.”
For further information please contact Unite head of media and campaigns Alex Flynn on 020 3371 2066 or 07967 665869.
Notes to editors:
- Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with over 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.