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BA Pilots to ballot for strike over OpenSkies

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BA Pilots to ballot for strike over OpenSkies

Old 11th Jan 2008, 17:26
  #41 (permalink)  
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Definitely not 'tar'ing EVERYbody else, that's for sure. It just seems that there's "plenty" of simple, logistical stuff that could get fixed. Like the military, airline employees ARE being asked to do more with less. That might work OK, when planes don't break/get delayed, AND the weather is good. Well, that's NOT very often. Thus, a monkey wrench, here and there, and the system seems to break down left and right. Very frustrating, that's for sure.
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Old 11th Jan 2008, 18:19
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It is very tiresome to hear what steely eyed wonders we all are keeping the show on the road singlehandedly and I believe it is an insult to people in other departments also doing their best to also keep the show on the road. What we suffer from is dinosaur unions, weak management and airline plagued by legacy issues regarding working practises.

Slowly things are changing but only slowly. For all the derision T5 will have a dramatic effect. e.g. all baggage loaders will be working in the same contracted way, crew transport to and from the car parks to the terminal will no longer be at the mercy of BA MT (a traditionally militant and disruptive group).

To the issue in question BA pilots are quite happy to support Project Lauren and negotiate different Ts & Cs the ONLY major sticking point is the lack of common seniority list. BA also want NO seniority based promotion...merit only. i.e. if your face fits then you can attempt a command course. The precedent for separate Ts & Cs but common list is there for all to see. AML, EOG and secondments to GSS.

If as BA allege it is a small operation and no threat then why their reluctance to agree? It is the trojan horse so similar to QANTAS/JETSTAR. Ask AF pilots who is crewing their company operations set up in a similar vein.

And the support they get from their own employees?
It has been explained we are not intent on stopping BA's brave effort. We just do not want to sign our own death warrant in the process.

One has to question the ability of BA management when BASSA are about to ballot for IA so soon after their last debacle. Remind me again when T5 opens.

I am very senior. Sorry but I will strike over the issue if I have to.
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Old 11th Jan 2008, 18:26
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Fargoo.....

Most of the older airlines are dealing with the same formula. "Do more with less." When I pull up to a gate and wait to be marshalled while burning $100 a minute of block time, I don't curse the rampers. When management doesn't keep enough spares around to fix airplanes, I do not curse the mechanics. We are under the burden of people running our companies who cut the essentials to the bone and are rewarding themselves at passenger and employee's expense. When given what we need to do our jobs, nobody can do it better than these highly experienced employees.

Back on point, BA is taking mainline airplanes they own and hiring "other"
employees to fly them. If this is not what we call a Scope issue in the U.S. , I've never seen one. The 757 should belong to BALPA...no matter how many or few seats in it.
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Old 11th Jan 2008, 18:41
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Shaka Zulu:
LHR_777 it's not as rosy a picture you are painting of ground staff.....
for example: push scheduled right before shift change. push truck there, tug connected, a/c about to push back. small failure leads to a 10min delay. push crew buggers off since it's shift change. UN bloody believeable. Not my aisle mate is the simple answer....
I agree. It is unbelievable. However, whilst I acknowledge that it's not all 'rosy', there are those that do say "end of my shift, see ya", there are also plenty that say "i'm not finished yet, I'll stick around".

The problem is, each shift has a 30-45 minute overlap built-in. If a push-back team is going to walk, then the theory is that the replacement team is already there. That doesn't happen though, as the replacement team often have no transport to get the the tug/stand, because the outgoing-team take a vehicle with them! Madness, I know.

From personal experience, if I didn't stick around after my shift, the 83 and 163 (and anything else delayed after 22:30hrs) would never get a load sheet.
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Old 11th Jan 2008, 18:52
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Well, I'm all for Open Skies pilots being on the BA seniority list. But why on earth have we already decided to accept reduced terms and conditions for this outfit.

I HAVE NOT

If we are all on the same list, it won't be long before we see W - patterns through the UK.

This will herald the end of our industry leading T and Cs airline.
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Old 11th Jan 2008, 18:52
  #46 (permalink)  
 
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From jacjetlag:

The 757 should belong to BALPA...no matter how many or few seats in it.
Are you sure thats what you meant to say jacjetlag? Just in case there is a misunderstanding here, BALPA is the British Air Line Pilotís Association. BA is British Airways. Although BALPA has a large proportion of BA pilots in its membership, it also represents thousands of other pilots in other UK companies. The 757 in question belongs to BA, and as much as BALPA might wish to 'own' it , that would just not work!

It is BALPA, on behalf of its members in BA, that is fronting the campaign to avoid BA using OpenLies ..... sorry, OpenSkies, to undermine their T&Cs of BA mainline pilots.
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Old 11th Jan 2008, 20:35
  #47 (permalink)  
 
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Mr. Bernoulli.....

To clarify, the flying of BA owned 757s should only be by BA pilots represented by BALPA( I'm certain you could have figured this all by yourself without going all lawyer about it) .

If BA wants to use a marketing ruse for public consumption that is up to Little Willie. Call it,the airline, whatever you want. I'm sure BA pilots would like these assignments, if done properly. Otherwise it's just more 3 card Monty trying to ratchet down your T's and C's. Capiche ??
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Old 12th Jan 2008, 19:31
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52049er, you mention no additional costs should OpenSkies pilots be attached to mainline seniority list.
With (say) an appointment freeze of 3, 4 or 5 years and a right to bid onto mainline afterwards, that would presumably leave an openskies pilot bidding to join a mainline fleet at pp4, 5 or 6. BA usually recruit at pp1 don't they?
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Old 12th Jan 2008, 20:44
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...and they still would be recruiting PP1 BA pilots to fly BA's aircraft. BRU to JFK rather than LHR to JFK but they're still BA's aircraft and they will all be on the same seniority list.

Still cheaper than discussing business plans with Virgin.
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Old 12th Jan 2008, 20:54
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With (say) an appointment freeze of 3, 4 or 5 years and a right to bid onto mainline afterwards, that would presumably leave an openskies pilot bidding to join a mainline fleet at pp4, 5 or 6. BA usually recruit at pp1 don't they?
Yes they do and hence it will be in OpenLies' pilots interest to be on a common seniority list. They will then fight with us rather than against us in any dispute over either Mainline or OpenLies' Ts & Cs.

BALPA have accepted that as a new startup venture there is no desire to undermine or torpedo the venture in any way. All we ask is for a common seniority list. All BA's objections in every other area have been answered and now the only response from mis-management is that 'we don't want mainline pilots 'contaminating' OpenLies'. Charming!

It couldn't possibly be because they have a hidden agenda now could it?

I hate the thought of striking, I hate the thought of damaging the hand that feeds me but I also intensely dislike the modern business ethos of screwing the employees, increasing shareholder value in the process and then riding off into the sunset with obscene amounts of money in the form of performance pay. Trade unions are a necessary evil and militancy is the distateful tool which I am compelled to use to protect MY Ts & Cs from being reduced to feather other people's nests.
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Old 12th Jan 2008, 23:32
  #51 (permalink)  
 
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M.Mouse, I couldn't have said it better myself.
Enough!
All this bullshit about starting an open dialogue with the pilot community and having an adult-like relationship between workforce and employee. It seems utter tripe.
Strike fund is in place. My letter to the CEO and other heads has been sent, relaying my concerns and my resolve.
This time the line in the sand is drawn!
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Old 13th Jan 2008, 01:49
  #52 (permalink)  
 
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I know of no other issue that has galvanised those I work with more than this.

If BA management choose to gamble on this, they will lose!

Reason?

Balpa will convey the message effectively, that we have far more at stake than the company!

I, and many others are prepared to pull the roof in over this. We have NO choice. Don't doubt it!

Anyone accepting positions in this outfit, prior to a resolution, can NEVER say they were not warned!
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Old 13th Jan 2008, 22:53
  #53 (permalink)  
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If I don't support BALPA in this, I'll be condemning myself to a significant pay and conditions cut in a few years. If it breaks BA, I'm likely to end up on those exact same conditions with another employer.

I have nothing to lose.
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Old 14th Jan 2008, 00:25
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Very well put.

It is a very unfortunate situation but the time has come.
I am fed up with the company constantly attacking our agreements. This leads to our reps having a huge unnecessary workload and us having to worry about the threat of industrial action every 6 months.

We have tried working with the company on all the recent issues, if the leadership won't work with us on this issue then we will have a different process now and in the future.


Very interesting and heartening to read support from those at AA and elsewhere. Thank you.
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Old 14th Jan 2008, 10:02
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While I'm sympathetic to BA pilots who naturally want to protect their agreements and get the extra jobs that may be on offer, you've already got thousands of jobs that some of us can't/won't have. Do you really need these Lauren jobs?

How about just leaving a little space for those outside BA? What with the recent mergers, there are precious few employers left.

Instead of crewing Lauren from BA and effectively reducing the prospects for those outside BA, particularly experienced Captains who have had enough of lowcost shorthaul, why not put these jobs on the open market? This doesn't stop BALPA from negotiating the terms.

Like it or not, my work and its remuneration are driven solely by market forces. Yes, I would like more money and better conditions but above all I want a job and career progression. BA pilots hogging Lauren doesn't do anything for the hundreds of pilots with nowhere to go, and that includes a lot of BALPA members.

Right, I'll get my head down.
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Old 14th Jan 2008, 10:37
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So to sum up your post it's basically "BA pilots please allow the trojan horse operation that'll drag down your terms and conditions 'cos it's a tough old world and I'd really like a new job". Crazy.
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Old 14th Jan 2008, 10:46
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Lauren is so tiny that its impact on BA pilots would be zero.

Yes, it is a tough a world and I would like a new job one day. What's wrong with that?
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Old 14th Jan 2008, 11:07
  #58 (permalink)  
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Manblk

What a strange post!

Yes, I would like more money and better conditions but above all I want a job and career progression.
I would like more money and better conditions also, but I would still respect the right of any airline's Pilots to protect their own position.


Regards
Exeng
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Old 14th Jan 2008, 11:08
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Nothing at all. Lauren is not going to be tiny. Lauren is either going to be big or completely fail. If it's big it represents a real threat to the industrial clout of BAs pilots and needs to part of the main BA seniority list. Whats wrong with that? Claiming that BA pilots want to 'hog' the jobs in an airline set up using BA money, run by the BA board using BA aircraft carrying passengers sold tickets by BA is a bit rich don't you think?
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Old 14th Jan 2008, 11:10
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Until the whole thing is thrashed out between BA and BALPA its probably a bit early to speculate on what may or may not be. Theres supposed to be a meeting sometime this week according to other postings and no doubt the outcome will be made known. They will either agree to a compromise whereby both parties come away with honour satisfied or the BA pilots will be up the road on strike which at the end of the day will do little to improve BA's fortunes or public image, let alone the future of their workforce.

I'm not a betting man but I would put money on there being some kind of deal that will allow BA F/O's to bid for commands or at least some proportion of them on the new venture with the externally recruited pilots being eligable to bid for mainline BA after a freeze period. The devil will of course be in the detail. If the deal unfairly favours BA mainline over external recruits then there will be no one interested in the job unless they are newly qualified (unlikely with a longhaul operation into JFK) or desperate. The recruitment process so far as I am aware would rule out both types of individual.

The postings from some that seem to view anyone from outside BA as incompetent or unsafe to operate the services are arrogant and nonsensical and will do nothing but harden attitudes. At the end of the day, pilot jobs are being created and whilst the BA crews must protect their position, after all every other airline uses BA as a benchmark, BALPA exists to further the interests of all its members, not just those in British Airways.

The best of luck to the negotiators. Lets hope it gets resolved without a punch up.
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