GMB Update 13th May (Update 29)

In Coronavirus by GMB x54 Communications

Legal Position

For legal position letters, please see your personal emails (sent to GMB Members in BA).

No basis for consultation

As you can see, it is the GMB’s view that we are not in a position to meet and consult with BA regarding their proposals:

  • We believe their proposals are an abuse of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme;
  • They are betraying the Memorandum of Agreement that we reached in March over furlough arrangements;
  • They are not complying with the 2012 Redeployment Process Agreement regarding consultation;
  • They have failed to explore all alternatives to redundancy, in particular approaching the Treasury for further support;
  • They have not provided all the relevant information that the law requires;
  • We cannot consult with our members in the current environment to the extent the law requires.

Our colleagues in Unite are of a similar view.

To be clear, this does not extend to other matters. So we will be engaging with BA over, for example, safe working particularly in the light of the recent changes to government advice regarding Covid-19.

Extension of CJRS

Shortly after our letter was written government announced that it is extending its CJRS scheme for a further 4 months, albeit on a reduced basis.
We think that this is yet another reason for the company to withdraw its proposals and instead start a proper dialogue with the unions.

Political campaign

It is clear that the emails and petitions that we have all been initiating are having an effect and we are gaining support with every day that passes.

Here is a statement released yesterday on Twitter by Huw Merriman, the Chair of the Transport Select Committee:

Here is the latest exchange from the House of Commons referring to the extension of the government’s furlough scheme:

Dame Cheryl Gillan (MP for Chesham and Amersham):
“Can he send a clear message to British Airways today that with this extension they should now remove all threat of redundancy which has been adding to the anxiety and stress of so many of their hardworking and in many cases long-serving staff?”

Mr Sunak (Chancellor of the Exchequer):
“She is right to urge employers to do the right thing at this difficult time.”

So we would encourage you all to continue to highlight our situation to your local MP.

Take care, stay strong,
Nadine Houghton
GMB National Officer