1 December marks the start of deeply challenging times for many Heathrow airport workers. Security, engineering, fire service, passenger services and airside operations staff have been forced to accept new contracts with Heathrow Airport Limited (HAL), far inferior to the ones they’ve held before. Drastic pay cuts – up to £8,000 per annum – are part of a broader plan that includes slashing working conditions and fire and rehire policy.
While devastating enough on their own, these actions are especially outrageous coming from a company whose CEO received £2,6 million in pay and bonuses in 2019. HAL have enormous debts and are nearing bankruptcy, yet they have continued to pay out dividends to shareholders.
They have also refused to work with Unite the Union on finding an alternative solution and instead pushed forward with measures that will disrupt the lives of more than 4,500 Heathrow staff. Following these actions and lack of cooperation, Heathrow workers have voted for four days of strike action in December, the first one being today.
ETF stands with Unite the Union and the striking workers and condemns HAL’s attempts at making the workers pay the price for corporate irresponsibility.
Workers should never be made to pay for reckless actions of millionaire CEOs, and these same CEOs should not be allowed to use the COVID-19 crisis to restructure, slash workers’ salaries, and at the same time continue to enrich shareholders.