A number of Virgin Atlantic pilots are set to go on strike during the Christmas period after members of the Professional Pilots’ Union (PPU) voted in favour of industrial action.
The dispute, which is over the airline’s refusal to recognise the PPU as a union, has led to the latter warning it was planning a series of one to four-day strikes, expected to kick off on the 22nd December.
Virgin Atlantic is currently seeking an injunction in a bid to quash the planned industrial action, but at the moment the union has not declared any plans to cancel the potential disruption.
The airline had initially said it expected minimal disruption, if any, to the schedule, but it seems the company is now taking precautionary measures. It also claims that a host of its pilots have agreed to work normally or cover extra flights if necessary.
Although the strikes were initially planned for the Christmas period only, the PPU warned that it would be ready to continue them into 2019, and has since revealed the dates it would be looking to hold the strikes on.
We take a look at the full list of the Virgin Atlantic pilot strike dates across December, January and February, if the industrial action does go ahead.
30th December to 2nd January
31st January – 3rd February
28th February – 2nd March
All listed dates are inclusive if the strikes do end up taking place. These can also be changed or withdrawn at the PPU’s discretion.
Currently, Virgin Atlantic does not recognise the PPU as a union, although the organisation represents a third of its pilots.
As a result, the airline excluded the PPU from reviews over pilots’ benefits and wages, which it is negotiating with union British Airline Pilots’ Association (BALPA).
In response the PPU held a ballot with their members, who voted in favour of industrial action.
The PPU says it approached arbitration service ACAS in a bid to speak with Virgin Atlantic and find a solution, but that the airline would not engage in discussions until the threat of strikes was removed.
It’s worth noting that although Virgin Atlantic is seeking an injunction in a bid to prevent the strikes, a spokesperson from the company said that the airline has "a number of contingency plans" in place should they go ahead.
Source: Read Full Article