- "We understand the frustration and disruption BALPA's strike action has caused our customers. After many months of trying to resolve the pay dispute, we are extremely sorry that it has come to this."
- The "commitment of everyone at British Airways is to get over this particular dispute as quickly as possible and we urge the union to sit down with us as quickly as we can so we can reach an agreement," said the head of British Airways.
- The next strike has been scheduled for September 27th if a mutual agreement isn't reached by then.
The British airline British Airways (BA) has canceled almost all scheduled flights on Monday and Tuesday due to a 48-hour unprecedented strike of pilots who are demanding a pay rise. The next strike action is already scheduled to take place on September 27th if the parties won’t have reached a mutual agreement.
The British Airline Pilots Association (BALPA), a British pilots union, last month informed the airline about three days of a strike in September – the first BA pilot strike in history of the airline. “We understand the frustration and disruption BALPA’s strike action has caused our customers. After many months of trying to resolve the pay dispute, we are extremely sorry that it has come to this,” a statement by British Airlines reads. “Unfortunately, with no detail from BALPA on which pilots would strike, we had no way of predicting how many would come to work or which aircraft they are qualified to fly, so we had no option but to cancel nearly 100% of our flights.” it added.
Ready For Talks
British Airlines CEO Alex Cruz said on BBC Radio that airlines want to resolve their pay issue as soon as possible because they were forced to cancel almost all flights on Monday and Tuesday. The “commitment of everyone at British Airways is to get over this particular dispute as quickly as possible and we urge the union to sit down with us as quickly as we can so we can reach an agreement,” said the head of British Airways.
”We hope to find a way to resolve this dispute. We have been trying very hard to do this for almost nine months, but now, unfortunately, we have to take action on a large scale,” said BALPA secretary general Brian Strutton on BBC Radio. He pointed out that the unions are ready to compromise, but alleged that BA on it’s part is not prepared to “give way.”
Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s spokeswoman urged both sides to reach an agreement and end the strike. After the strike, which is set to end on Tuesday, the next strike has been scheduled for September 27th if a mutual agreement isn’t reached by then. A section of the international media has quoted both sides saying that they are ready for further talks anyway.
“Fair salary offer”
BALPA unions have announced that BA should share more profits with pilots, whereas on their part, British Airways have stated that the strike is unjustified because their pay offer is fair. With thousands of people now forced to look for alternative forms of travel on Monday and Tuesday, BA have been criticized from some quarters for poor communication due to having not alerted the passengers quite in advance about the strike.