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British Airways Union Plans to Vote on Strike, Again

January 18, 2010 By: Jena Tesse Fox

British Airways' (BA) cabin crew is voting once again on whether or not to strike. According to The Guardian, a strike could happen as early as March, if approved.

"We are saddened but not surprised that Unite has called another strike ballot," BA said in a statement. "Unite's decision, foreshadowed in a letter to cabin crew on January 8, calls into question its good faith in the negotiations we took part in throughout last week in an effort to reach a settlement without disruption...Over the past year, many British Airways staff have made significant contributions toward the company's vital programme of permanent cost reduction. It is regrettable that Unite, on behalf of its cabin crew members, has as yet offered no more than empty gestures. In recent discussions, Unite has put forward proposals that would actually result in a large increase in costs by reversing the changes to onboard crew numbers made last November."
The statement went on to say that in the current economic climate, "this approach is completely unrealistic."

The company also said that if the strike proceeds, they will provide assistance for those crew who wish to work, "and we will explore all options to enable us to operate the best flying programme possible under the circumstances."

If strike dates are announced, customers booked to travel during that period will be able to rebook for free onto other British Airways flights outside of the strike period for up to 12 months from the original date of travel, subject to availability. Refunds will be available if flights are actually canceled.

In the event that cancellations are made due to strike action, customers booked to travel during that period will be able to:

* Rebook onto another British Airways flight within 12 months of the original date of travel
* Rebook onto another British Airways flight to/from the nearest alternative airport  (for example, if booked to/from Boston, fliers could rebook to/from Philadelphia or New York)
* Cancel the booking and get a refund.

All rebooking options will be subject to availability.

More detailed information about rebooking options, including specific dates covered by these guidelines will be made available if a strike is announced. 

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