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BBT March/April 2019 cover
March/April 2019

Updated: Virgin Atlantic denies Easter strike rumour

Virgin Atlantic B787-9 taking off

Virgin Atlantic and the Unite Union have denied claims that cabin crew are considering strike action over a new pay deal that has yet to be confirmed.

Virgin Atlantic told BBT: “We’re still in discussions with our crew and the Unite Union regarding pay and allowances. We want to reassure all of our customers that our flying operation will continue as normal over Easter.”

The Daily Telegraph said a whistleblower claimed the airline was looking at cutting cabin crews’ annual allowance, though base salaries would increase slightly. The supposed staff member said the cut would mean they would be out of pocket for food and drinks when staying at the hotels booked for them by Virgin Atlantic during work trips.

Furthermore, the person claimed the deal would mean they would be earning less than the minimum wage. They also said the move could worsen the airline’s gender pay gap because the majority of air stewards at the company are female while most pilots – who would be unaffected by the cut – are male.

Virgin Atlantic’s pay gap grew from 28.4 per cent to 31 per cent in 12 months, it has been revealed.

The Daily Telegraph reported that cabin crew were allegedly considering strike action over the Easter holidays – one of the busiest times of the year for Virgin Atlantic – but the airline has denied the rumour and says flights will operate as normal.

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