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Old 25th Feb 2018, 11:28
  #4536 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 595
I’ve spent some time thinking about why we have had such a massive slide in BA over the past few years. BA will obviously take what they can when they can - they want to be as competitive as possible, so who can blame them? This has always been the case though, so the answer must come down to why can they take so much now?

What has changed in the last couple of years? Well for starters, we have a huge number of new DEPs who have come from other airlines, who largely share the views of the guys on this thread. “BA is way better than our previous outfits, what are you all whinging about?” Are they going to put up a fight against BA?

What else has changed? EASA and the availability of part time! There is no doubt at all that EASA FTLs have made our jobs far more fatiguing. Long haul is all trip two days off, trip two days off, and it does not matter who you ask, everyone who has been flying long haul for any period of time finds that relentless and hugely fatiguing. I cannot comment on how EASA has altered short haul, but I am sure it is not for the better. However, in almost the same time frame, it is now far easier to access part time. So the more senior guys who have a bit of spare cash have been able to remove the fatiguing changes by going part time. If you can afford 50% you are laughing. Who needs bidline when you are senior and part time? Senior JSS guys will be writing their own rosters - especially if they are part time!

Who needs a NAPS pension when you have already taken your pension out of NAPS. Who needs a NAPS pension when you are already drawing it with flexible retirement? Who needs a NAPS pension when you were recruited without one in the first place?

Then we have got BALPA. The pilots are BALPA, and yet far too many people in BA trust BALPA to such an extent that they do not even bother to read the new changes being proposed. Instead, they just vote whichever way BALPA recommends. The BALPA reps negotiate as best as they can. They put their hearts into it, and come up with their clever little ideas. They love their deals and think they have done a great job. Of course they are going to recommend it is accepted! It is kind of like a form of Stockholm syndrome. Who would invest so much time, effort and passion in something and then say it should be discarded?

The rate of deterioration in BA has therefore accelerated massively, and will not stop, until the pilots as a majority, genuinely want it to stop. The new entrants (if they weren’t Captains previously), are just happy to be here and will take anything. The senior guys have mitigated their problems by going part time, shifting their pensions or drawing them, and are ready to leave with three months notice when things get too bad, and so have given up the fight.

I have flown with far too many people who think BA is great and to be blunt, they are their own worst problem. Their LoCo outfits had low terms and conditions because they never stood up and protected them - they were just glad to have jobs. Now they are a growing majority in BA, and they are doing more of the same!

So BA’s terms and conditions are disappearing off down the drain at a scary rate, and will continue to do so because we are continuing to recruit people who are happy with their lot despite the decline. What will you end up with in a surprisingly short space of time? That is right, somewhere just like your old outfit but with nowhere to escape to this time.
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