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BA Strike - Your Thoughts & Questions III

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BA Strike - Your Thoughts & Questions III

Old 9th Nov 2010, 17:45
  #581 (permalink)  
 
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Not one of the various union communications linked on here in respect of the BA offer provide any caution whatsoever to their members of the consequences of rejecting this deal. Nor provide any guidance as to what they hope a subsequent strike will achieve.

Shameful.
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Old 9th Nov 2010, 18:26
  #582 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Mariner9
Not one of the various union communications linked on here in respect of the BA offer provide any caution whatsoever to their members of the consequences of rejecting this deal. Nor provide any guidance as to what they hope a subsequent strike will achieve.

Shameful.
I feel that as the instigator of the current offer, and particularly as both BASSA & CC89 have now openly stated they do not recommend acceptance, Unite should step in here and warn both the Branches (that BA could pull the offer) and their individual members of the dire consequences of rejecting this deal. It is clear the Branch leaderships have descended into "we will fight to the death without any thought to what we might achieve and to hell with the consequences" mode and any rational thought has been abandoned.

Over to you Unite..........

Last edited by AV Flyer; 9th Nov 2010 at 20:20.
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Old 9th Nov 2010, 21:38
  #583 (permalink)  
 
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I think it was planned by BASSA that they would send a letter with the ballot information, and BA may have already raised objections regarding the content of the letter.

Either way, Unite need to get control of this situation and explain clearly to members the implications of voting no.

This is such a farce!
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Old 10th Nov 2010, 03:15
  #584 (permalink)  
 
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How long will it be before one of the retiring General Secretaries of Unite has to “Take One for the Team” and tell BASSA/CC89 that there will be no vote for Industrial Action much less an actual Strike. Look at the upside and downside for Unite if there is actually a strike. Unless a new justification for IA can be found that Unite’s legal council will guarantee (guarantee may be too strong) is not a continuation of the previous IA Unite can not authorize a strike ballot. The potential liability to Unite could be significant. In the US we would ask outside council for an opinion letter. Even if this issue could be dealt with there are other costs to Unite of a strike. Legal expenses defending their reason for striking as well as legal expenses defending those that may be terminated could be substantial and ongoing for a long time. There would also be the expense of strike pay. What could be accomplished other than causing BA some financial stress? Nothing, but Mixed Fleet would grow rapidly and BA would be rid of some employees they do not need.
Even if a strike was called, how many would actually strike? Not many in my opinion. This time any reasonable person (I know there may be a good number that do not qualify) will know the consequences of striking. What Staff Travel they have will be gone, they may be sacked and have to deal with that through the system, and BA will continue to operate the majority of their flights. What could be gained by a striker? Would some BASSA/CC89 supporter please let me know.
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Old 10th Nov 2010, 10:56
  #585 (permalink)  
 
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The key legal issue is whether or not a new reason (which is unconnected to the old reason) can be found for striking.

If individuals strike without a new reason, they lose their protection from whatever the employer decides to do about the employee's breach of contract.
BA might welcome such a strike, as it would enable them to fire the strikers whilst retaining all the non-striking crew.

However, the issue in this case is not really about the employees.

If any official of a TU incites a person to breach their contract, outside a "protected" strike, then the TU is liable for damages. If bassa or cc89 officials incite their members to do anything other than what BA tell them to do (remember the blinds fiasco), then Unite becomes liable to pay any and all of BA's costs...............and those costs could include "damage to reputation".
That's why the Unite Exec retain to themselves the right to authorise any form of Industrial Action.....................but the Exec are also s***-scared of "renegade" officials.
If bassa/cc89 do anything naughty, Unite will write to BA within 24 hours to disown their actions.
er, stalemate?
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Old 10th Nov 2010, 13:38
  #586 (permalink)  
 
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santascrew

have just 'enjoyed' the link to this on the other forum!

it's so woolworths! 'santa's grotto' only needs slight manipulation!
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Old 10th Nov 2010, 16:14
  #587 (permalink)  
 
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Talking

I have just suggested on the "Grotto" link that the BASSA leaders who didn't strike themselves over the requirement for CSD's to work the cabin, chip in for the hardship fund.

I wonder if it will appear?
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Old 10th Nov 2010, 19:16
  #588 (permalink)  
 
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Appendix II___________link
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Old 10th Nov 2010, 20:40
  #589 (permalink)  
 
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Interesting link NL. It would apppear to cast doubt on the many posts on here suggesting a split between Unite/BASSA/CC89. All three seem united in their condemnation of the deal, and not a single word of caution to their members regarding the consequences of rejection.
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Old 10th Nov 2010, 21:09
  #590 (permalink)  
 
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Interesting link NL. It would apppear to cast doubt on the many posts on here suggesting a split between Unite/BASSA/CC89. All three seem united in their condemnation of the deal, and not a single word of caution to their members regarding the consequences of rejection.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but whilst CC89 and BASSA are united in their condemnation of the deal, the commentary linked to above, is not the official line from the Unite leadership (which negotiated this deal with BA)?
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Old 10th Nov 2010, 21:50
  #591 (permalink)  
 
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It is all in the numbers

As you say baggersup - there will very likely be an offer by BA to former BASSA members who have left since 25 June._ This will increase the number of ex BASSA members who have accepted substantially the same offer.

The new General Secretary of Unite will be tempted by this growing group within the shrinking Heritage Cabin Crew._ The newly elected General Secretary may well see these as potential members of Unite._ But members in some other way that does not give power to the troublesome cults.

The cults could become more concerned with the lower ranks of cc if it was easy for Union members to anonymously switch funds between BASSA/cc89/PCCC groups._ This could be done if the individual cc paid his annual subscription directly to Unite - and ticked one of several boxes for the 5% subsidy to a group selected by this tick._ There would need to be one more box to tick - a charity for the member who hated and detested all existing groups._ Ie tick BASSA or cc’89 or PCCC or charity._ Each group would try with their words (on their web sites) and their deeds to behave in an attractive way to ordinary cabin crew members.

It is all in the numbers._ And numbers will be listened to.

(p.s. 5% is a guess - it could be 6% or 10%)
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Old 10th Nov 2010, 23:02
  #592 (permalink)  
 
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Baggersup. If the Unite members reject this offer BA don't have to do anything. They could be a little vindictive and rescind the staff travel they have returned as a goodwill gesture, but that would probably be a mite inflammatory. If BA sit tight a) Unite are unlikely to grant a request for a further strike ballot as they have already said that the offer on the table is the best deal going. b) given the lack of incentive for Unite to call a further strike ballot, the status quo will persist. At some point the BASSA membership will get hacked off by their leaders' singular inability to do anything about the situation and will either call for fresh elections or start leaving in droves. As soon as the membership drops below the threshold BA will derecognise the union.

The ball is firmly in the union's court. Given that Tony Woodley has endorsed the deal, I suspect that the Unite leadership know that the legal action they have outstanding is a bit of a long shot and being able to say that they dropped it in order to get a decent deal from BA is not only a useful face saving exercise, it is also a cost saver as well. They are probably reluctant to get too involved with the dismissals and other disciplinary cases as the dirty laundry that might be aired could have a nasty comeback on the union (they allowed members to do what ?? in the name of the union ) . The Unite leadership know that it's game over and high time to move on to something more pressing. The BASSA executive still think they can operate as an independant union, but have no place in the negotiations. BA have stated that they will only deal with Unite as BASSA and CC89 are branches of the union.

From the members standpoint, the likelihood that many will heed a strike call next time around is low. Last time they walked out, they lost staff travel for six months. Now, knowing that BA have no qualms about pulling the plug on this perk and that the union is not able to get it returned in short order, they may be more cautious about wanting to walk out again. They also lost a lot more than just the few days pay that they were on strike for. The adage of 'once bitten, twice shy' is pretty appropriate. If the BASSA executive persist in seeking strike action, they may be dismayed at how irrelevant they are percieved by their members, their union leaders and their employer. Time to learn some new tricks.
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Old 11th Nov 2010, 08:06
  #593 (permalink)  
 
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Caribean Boy on the other thread says
Quote
From the intranet (published today)

Mixed Fleet launched on 1 November, with the first flight to Prague. Other initial Mixed Fleet routes are Pisa and St Petersburg. Las Vegas and Denver will come on line in December. 145 crew have already started or completed training, with plans on track to deliver a further 120 crew per month
end of Caribean Boy's quote

This matches with the "BA News" on thebasource on 1 November. However the statistics of new crew is "new-news" and relevant to forward predictions (1,400 new crew per year)
The first flight crewed by BA’s new Mixed Fleet cabin crew took off today. BA854 London - Prague was operated by A319 G-EUOD. The Mixed Fleet cabin crew are employed on new contracts and will be type rated for the A318/A319/A320/A321 and Boeing 777. Initial Mixed Fleet routes are Prague, St Petersburg and Pisa with Las Vegas and Denver to be added in December. Heathrow flights will operate with either existing or Mixed Fleet crew but the two will not work together on the same flight.
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Old 11th Nov 2010, 09:46
  #594 (permalink)  
 
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There seems to be a broad consensus on here and the other thread that Unite will not allow a strike ballot. However I am not so sure. The Unite communication (and it is Unite, not BASSA) linked by NL from their website says as follows:

Amongst other things this means that the union and its members surrenders the right to seek permission to appeal against the decision of the Court of Appeal that crewing levels, though collectively agreed and incorporated into the contract of employment, were never intended to be contractually binding. The logic of this decision is absurd. The Court of Appeal accepted that the decision of the trial judge back in February was completely flawed and could not stand. They rejected too BA’s principal argument that an agreement about crewing levels was “not apt” to be incorporated into the contracts of employment. But they held that neither BA or the union negotiators (nor the members) could have intended that crewing levels were binding in spite of the express provision in the contracts incorporating the collective agreements spelling out the crewing levels. In other words they held that we were agreeing that BA could alter the agreed crewing levels unilaterally for any reason at any time. This needs to be appealed.

The litigation section also means that the union to which we all pay our subscriptions agrees not to use those subscriptions to support any legal claims covered by Appendix II - no matter how outrageous or unlawful the situation in which you find yourself. One wonders: what is the point of being in a union then?
That is hardly the communication of a Union enticing its members to accept a proposal. If the union do not apparently want their members to accept a deal, and TW says no better deal can be obtained through negotiation, what else is left other than a strike?

Meanwhile, we've got BASSA, led by sacked and retired BA staff (that cannot be sacked by BA or even lose any wages or ST through a strike) who are chomping at the bit for a strike in a seeming desire to gain revenge on BA for "losing" the last round of strikes.

So my money is still on another strike, despite its utter pointlessness, and likely disastrous consequences for the strikers.
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Old 11th Nov 2010, 10:01
  #595 (permalink)  
 
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If the union do not apparently want their members to accept a deal, and TW says no better deal can be obtained through negotiation, what else is left other than a strike?
They could always accept that a strike is their only option, and also accept that a strike wont work, and therefore accept defeat.

It's an option!
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Old 11th Nov 2010, 10:14
  #596 (permalink)  
 
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I doubt that is a Unite website - the url might be UniteBA but despite the Unite and BA logo, all the contacts are Amicus \ CC89 (and there is an Amicus logo up there as well).

The content seems sadly reminiscent of
a teenage tantrum where common sense has gone out of the window in favour of blaming everyone \ anyone for their own predicament.

Ultimately, I'd expect a "No" vote to the agreement and then the ball is in Unites court (could be quite literally). Do they call for further IA which all but the most blinkered know will fail? Or do they just ignore it and hope (like BA) that BASSA will gradually fade away?


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Old 11th Nov 2010, 10:39
  #597 (permalink)  
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The Unite communication (and it is Unite, not BASSA) linked by NL from their website says as follows:
That is absolutely not Unites communication. Its CC89s website and their comms.
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Old 11th Nov 2010, 11:59
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From a poster on flyertalk
Unite has suspended the ballot on the latest offer:

Statement by Tony Woodley, Joint General Secretary:

"From the outset of this dispute, Unite has endeavoured, under the guidance of cabin crew representatives, to negotiate a settlement that would be acceptable to our members and address their real concerns. It has been made clear on many occasions that Unite and I personally will not under any circumstances recommend to our cabin crew members any offer that was not also recommended by our elected representatives.

Shortly after this latest offer was negotiated, including as it does significant modifications of BA’s previous position in relation to staff travel and discipline, it was reluctantly agreed at a meeting of cabin crew representatives that it be recommended. This was in order to ensure that the offer could go out to a ballot, giving the members a chance to express their views, since British Airways had made a positive recommendation from all parts of Unite involved in the dispute a precondition for the eventual full restoration of the staff travel concessions unjustifiably withdrawn from crew who took lawful industrial action.

Our cabin crew representatives have, on reflection, decided that they can no longer support a recommendation of this offer to the membership, even in the heavily qualified terms originally agreed, and have so advised cabin crew. Accordingly, the union will no longer make such a recommendation. Any sense that this offer is being presented to cabin crew over the heads of unwilling representatives would be deeply damaging to the union and its members above all. Our unity has been a vital source of strength throughout this dispute.

Under these circumstances, I have suspended the ballot on the offer and will meet with all of our cabin crew representatives as a matter of urgency to consider the next steps. Our representatives will determine what course of action should be followed in order to secure an offer that can be recommended to the members, who will ultimately decide when this dispute can be settled."
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Old 11th Nov 2010, 12:30
  #599 (permalink)  
 
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BASSA members denied a voice

Quotes from BASSA, 20th October 2010: (my emphasis)


"Very shortly, later this afternoon, we will publish all details of the offer for you to consider."

"Is it perfect? No. Far from it. Does it address the issues of staff travel and disciplinaries? Yes it does. Is it to a level that is satisfactory? That will be your decision."

"Contained in the offer from Mr. Walsh, you will notice his insistence that your union recommends the offer or it will not be made available for you to vote on, denying you your democratic vote. For this reason alone, your union will fulfill that request, because to do otherwise would be to deny you an opportunity to vote."

"We are all the union, every single one of us, therefore we are not in the business of denying you that opportunity. So please be assured you will get your chance to vote to accept or reject it."

"This has been a very bitter and damaging dispute for all sides and the airline as a whole. From that the resolution will never be perfect. This is a resolution. Does it go far enough? That’s for you to decide."


so a few weeks after this statement, BASSA have gone back on their word and are denying their members a voice.


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Old 11th Nov 2010, 12:44
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Why delay the strike vote for a pesky formality like doing what they said (in writing) they would do in asking their members whether to accept an excellent offer or alternately prolong the dispute and risk losing their careers?

Well at least the question of whether Unite will actually allow a strike ballot will be answered soon enough. (It will have to be quick if they are to obtain their much-longed-for Christmas Strike).

Last edited by Mariner9; 11th Nov 2010 at 13:52.
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