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BA Strike - Your Thoughts & Questions IV

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BA Strike - Your Thoughts & Questions IV

Old 15th Feb 2011, 00:30
  #441 (permalink)  
 
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penciseley

The problem for the PAX perspective is not knowing who you are dealing with, in a crew of 12 on a 744 statistics say there could be 4 - 5 of the destructive eelement
Very good point and FWIW it's a problem for the crewmembers as well. They spend the first few hours (days of a long trip) trying to work out the politics of their colleagues.

Not saying it's right or it should effect customer service, but that's the way it is at the moment.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 04:24
  #442 (permalink)  
 
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pencisely, if you wait a little I would imagine that the end of the story will write itself with BA doing very little. There are enough developments mentioned on this and the other thread to lead those of sufficient motivation down the road to finishing this...
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 11:47
  #443 (permalink)  
 
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Been watching both threads for quite a while. What is glaring a large majority of people in the face is that there IS something wrong. It now needs Unite or BASSA to produce requested accounts for BASSA during the next 28 days or one or both of them are in breach of the law. It can no longer be hidden and it is VITAL that any thoughts of wrongdoing, that many people are harboring at the moment, must be laid to rest. It is beholden on the officers of both Unite and BASSA to deal with the matter immediately.

What is so wrong with this situation is that is leaving a sour taste in many a mouth.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 12:01
  #444 (permalink)  
 
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Entaxie,

Only the Unite Exec Cttee can authorise any IA by any Branch.
bassa do not have the power to call any industrial action.

On this fuss about Accounts - Unite is the TU as far as the Certification Officer is concerned. bassa is just a branch.

As a number of us said some time ago - in any dispute - "Follow the Money"

As to PC3 becoming involved in this stuff about bassa accounts, I would argue that they should stay away from it.

PC3's efforts need to be in establishing themselves, and in recruitment. They will never be recognised by BA just because they are not bassa. - that is not the way that recognition works!
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 12:07
  #445 (permalink)  
 
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Well it may well be illegal not to produce accounts, but it seems to me (and perhaps Litebulbs could correct me if wrong) there is nothing to stop BASSA paying their reps any sum they like without contravening any law (provided appropriate taxes are paid).

Whether those sums will be deemed fair and reasonable by the membership is another matter obviously.

However, many BASSA members are apparently happy to support their leadership in further strike action, thus foregoing significant sums. With this in mind, are they likely to get too upset by a possible misuse of a portion of their 15/month?
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 14:01
  #446 (permalink)  
 
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I'm sure that all the accounts will be in order and that all the BASSA officers will be correctly remunerated. I'm also sure that such people, being in the public eye, will be sure to have made the appropriate returns to HMRC.

As an aside, if anyone feels that they know someone is evading tax and they want HMRC to know about it, there is a handy link here: HM Revenue & Customs: Reporting Tax Evasion
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 16:14
  #447 (permalink)  
 
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An 'interesting' couple of days, as the focus shifts from discussing who/how/when to strike ... to the entire probity of the BASSA administration.

Isn't it strange how discussions about membership records led to revelations about the paid Rep sub-contracting the task, and led naturally to "Who gets paid what and for what?" and "Where does all that money go?"

Administrative and [especially] Financial transparency is fundamental. Whilst I'm not suggesting anything wrong in what BASSA has, or is, doing it is essential that they/Unite provide [as required by Law] the required information. That's not a witch-hunt against DH or LM or anyone else ... just a desire to see the Law complied with, and for BA CC to have an understanding of what's happening.

If there are still any Journalists reading this thread, I hope they might also take a bit of detailed interest. Relying on an individual CC member to risk retaliation from Union activists in not necessarily a desirable route to follow.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 16:53
  #448 (permalink)  
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I'm not surprised that these question shave come now. When BA challenged the vote it can only have been (in my personal view) because they could show the figures of crew who asked them to deduct membership fees from pay and compared it against the numbers who voted. Unless the two tallied within a very narrow margin - the vote would be invalid.

Thus, when BA quietly waited until the last minute (.com) and pitched the numbers across the table to the judiciary, fallout became inevitable. It appears to me (personal view) that BA have won this round and, just possibly, initiated a turning point in the affairs of the whole shooting match.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 17:12
  #449 (permalink)  
 
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There was a previous link to an article that stated the problem with the vote was not the number of ballots but the ballot wording. My understanding is that the wording was so vague as to not adequately state a reason for IA.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 17:18
  #450 (permalink)  
 
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However, to be fair [which I rarely am] much of this is based on rumour and innuendo. This is, after all, "only a website" ... with apologies to PPRuNe

BASSA/Unite would be well advised to dispel those concerns as quickly as possible, with independent oversight or a credible sign-off by Accountants. Straight facts are needed, not more rhetoric and obfuscation.
  • [*]
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I could imagine BA's Legal Department already have that up their sleeve, though.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 17:27
  #451 (permalink)  
 
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Advert for HW Fisher Trade Union ACC't

.....appeared at the bottom of this thread prior to login. They are one of two who audit Unite accounts.

Coincidence or conspiracy? Not serious about this just thought it funny.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 20:16
  #452 (permalink)  
 
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I have followed this thread for some time now, and I have a feeling it's over for BASSA. Let's hope the many dedicated BA cabin crew who have suffered through all the egotistical ramblings are able to find proper union representation after all this is finished.

Many thanks to Mr Bernoulli for linking to thread I started on another forum, where I set out some of the reasons why I believe BASSA is now scuppered, based on an inability to keep accurate membership records (calling into doubt the validity of any future ballot) and that even if such a ballot was supported by the Electoral Reform Service there is plentiful evidence that BASSA and Unite would be engaging in action with would be "unprotected":

Discussion - Business Traveller

Here is the government's definition of the criteria for "unprotected action" which BASSA has refused to publicise amongst its membership:

Taking part in industrial action : Directgov - Employment

I would strongly caution anyone considering making a Tax Evasion allegation that there is no evidence whatsoever for such an allegation against anybody. Making a knowingly false accusation would likely be looked upon most seriously.

To BASSAswitch, I would ensure you have something in writing from Unite confirming you made a formal request today, 15 February 2011, for BASSA's accounts, as well as specifying the years for which you expect accounts to be furnished to you. It might also be as well to understand how these records will be made available (electronically, on paper via a viewing etc.) and whether you will be able to make copies of the records.

There can be some debate as to what actually constitutes accounting records; you should quote the phrase "The report should show income, expenditure, receipts, membership numbers, details of branch auditors, details of any bank accounts and accounts including those relating to BASSA and its connected entities".

Ensure you have a name and contact number, and that you chase three or four times in the next 28 days to ensure the request is being progressed.

I would also suggest calling the two audit firms responsible for approving the Unite accounts as most helpfully suggested by summerishere. The auditors' contact details are set out below:

HW Fisher & Sons
http://www.hwfisher.co.uk/site/cms/c...p?category=256

Hard Dowdy
Hard Dowdy Accountants

It might be as well to line up a qualified accountant to assist you in understanding any documentation which you do get to see, in case BASSA refuse to release publicly their accounts.

I am astounded despite all the murmurings on the various sites out there that it has taken this long for someone to actually pick up the phone and make such an enquiry, so congratulations for taking the initiative and indeed for braving what may well be a difficult few weeks as a consequence. Roll on 15 March!

I don't often see the Final Offer BA made to Unite quoted here, so here it is, as it's fundamental to the resolution of this dispute and speaking (as a passenger) to crew on board my most recent flights not all of them have actually read it (again, it amazes me that those affected don't even read the offer their union refused to put before them...):

http://www.uniteba.com/ESW/Files/151...llectivev6.doc

Finally, I will leave you with these words:

"Strikers are deluded if they think they can win".

And that's not my opinion, that's the opinion of Derek Simpson, Unite General Secretary:

Unite 4 Labour in Edinburgh: Derek Simpson fails to deliver|17Apr10|Socialist Worker

It's a real shame BASSA has dragged Trade Unionism back into the dark ages of the 1970s through their intransigence and incompetence.
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Old 15th Feb 2011, 22:02
  #453 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by MPN11 View Post
An 'interesting' couple of days, as the focus shifts from discussing who/how/when to strike ... to the entire probity of the BASSA administration.

Isn't it strange how discussions about membership records led to revelations about the paid Rep sub-contracting the task, and led naturally to "Who gets paid what and for what?" and "Where does all that money go?"

Administrative and [especially] Financial transparency is fundamental. Whilst I'm not suggesting anything wrong in what BASSA has, or is, doing it is essential that they/Unite provide [as required by Law] the required information. That's not a witch-hunt against DH or LM or anyone else ... just a desire to see the Law complied with, and for BA CC to have an understanding of what's happening.

If there are still any Journalists reading this thread, I hope they might also take a bit of detailed interest. Relying on an individual CC member to risk retaliation from Union activists in not necessarily a desirable route to follow.
I would say that is exactly what you are doing..
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Old 16th Feb 2011, 06:26
  #454 (permalink)  
 
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And why not indeed. There is also a law against union activists intimidating individuals who stand up for their rights. In this case a quest to know what is happening to the funds that the members put into the union.

To the officers of BASSA it seems you have only 28 days to produce the figures. I tend to feel that might not be enough.
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Old 16th Feb 2011, 07:56
  #455 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by BBOWFIGHTER View Post
And why not indeed. There is also a law against union activists intimidating individuals who stand up for their rights. In this case a quest to know what is happening to the funds that the members put into the union.

To the officers of BASSA it seems you have only 28 days to produce the figures. I tend to feel that might not be enough.
What law would that be? I think you will find it is generally against the law to do that not TU specific. But, of course that wouldn't suit your rhetoric, would it?
I find little difference between what BASSA does and what a majority of posters on here do. Preach to the converted.
If BASSA have abused member contributions then they deserve everything that will happen to them. I'd rather wait until that is proven than make the assumption.
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Old 16th Feb 2011, 08:20
  #456 (permalink)  
 
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Call100

Very well said. This assumption of guilt is quite annoying and I am sure that if the books are above board, there will not be a flow of apologies on both threads. Some of the stronger accusations could find there way into legal proceedings, if the damaged parties want more than an apology.

I would imagine that a fair amount of strike pay has been distributed, along with the cost mass meetings and litigation, that Unite central financing will have been paying a fair amount of attention to the money coming in against that going out at both national and branch level.
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Old 16th Feb 2011, 08:25
  #457 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by call100
If BASSA have abused member contributions then they deserve everything that will happen to them. I'd rather wait until that is proven than make the assumption.
I think most people would agree with that.

[edit = and also Litebulbs' comment above]

However, as a starting point one has to assume either innocence or guilt.
If innocence is presumed, there would be little need to seek the facts.
The converse also applies.
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Old 16th Feb 2011, 08:50
  #458 (permalink)  
 
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Some of the stronger accusations could find there way into legal proceedings, if the damaged parties want more than an apology
I've just had a quick look back on this and the other thread, and there does not appear to be any accusations of financial wrongdoing other than speculation as to whether proper accounts will be made available within the alloted timeframe.

I reiterate what I said above. BASSA can do what they like with their funds provided they are properly accounted for. They have to answer only to their members in respect of their finances, not to us.
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Old 16th Feb 2011, 09:06
  #459 (permalink)  
 
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I don't think there has been any allegation of accounting irregularities made here.

What is being alleged is that BASSA may not have kept proper accounts (an unfounded allegation - we have no evidence either way) and that it may have made an effort to obfuscate members' enquiries to have access to the accounts made possible in the past, using unacceptable excuses such as "wait until we are less busy/out of dispute" etc.

One area which is still unclear to me is whether BASSA is a Union or a Branch.

In some ways, BASSA does act like a Union, but we should remember that it is only the Union itself which has the legal responsibilities in the Trade Union and Labour Relations Act 1992; Unite may need to demonstrate to auditors and others that it has received proper records from its branches, but I am not certain those branches themselves have a statutory responsibility to produce accounts, other than as "good practice" and in a spirit of transparency to its own membership.

I would not be surprised at all if after all this, accounts are indeed produced for the BASSA branch, but they are at such a high level and lacking in detail that nothing can be drawn from them; it is therefore

Apart from vague statements from various people that they "once" saw the accounts (at a time, date and place unspecified) and they "looked fine to them" without any reference to what sort of qualification those people had to make a judgement, we have no evidence that any accounts are kept, apart from the assurance of Unite's auditors, which I would urge BASSA members to contact directly:

HW Fisher & Sons
http://www.hwfisher.co.uk/site/cms/c...p?category=256

Hard Dowdy
www.harddowdy.co.uk

It is not clear to me whether BASSA itself has engaged auditors to produce its own accounts; these may differ from the names above, as those relate to Unite's accounts (of which BASSA's numbers form a not inconsiderable part).

I would make the point that whatever type of accounts BASSA has kept, Unite absolutely has the right to use the full 28 days and nothing can be construed from them taking the full legal amount of time to produce this, apart from perhaps an inference that such accounts were not readily to hand and evidence of a less than transparent approach to its membership.

Even if accounts are produced, and satisfy accounting law, they may still reveal some evidence of funds being used in ways which may well be legal, but may not be viewed favourably by BASSA's membership.

However, as others have stated, it is important not to make any unfounded allegations, and to wait for the 28 days period to pass.

What is significant is that if the accounts cannot be produced in a timely fashion, then that is a most serious breach of Trade Union law, for which there could be significant legal repercussions.

Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992

That is the real issue at hand, not whether there has been any financial impropriety.
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Old 16th Feb 2011, 13:31
  #460 (permalink)  
 
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Blog

What with the switch to only the 'threat' of further strikes it seems like Dunc will have more time on his hands to update his blog

But seriousley, if you are wondering what right minded people would continue to support this drivel, see here

Feel free to join up!
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