British Airways accused of ‘smash and grab opportunism’ as parent company accepts one billion Spanish bailout

Unite the union has accused British Airways’ parent company IAG of a two-faced approach to its operation.

Spanish bailout

Unite made its comments after it emerged that Iberian airlines and Vueling the Spanish carriers of British Airways’ parent company IAG had negotiated €1 billion worth of loans from the Spanish government to offset the impact of the coronavirus crisis.

British Airways has refused to seek financial assistance from the UK government and is instead proposing to cut 12,000 jobs and is seeking to reduce the terms and conditions of its remaining employees.

BA smash and grab

Unite national officer for aviation Oliver Richardson said: “The fact that Iberian airlines is seeking support from the Spanish government should be welcomed and is a common sense approach to preserving jobs and services, following the immense damage the COVID-19 pandemic has caused to the aviation sector.

“What is concerning is that the parent company IAG is not seeking a similar solution for British Airways.

“This is another gross insult to the UK workforce that BA plans to send to the dole.  We appeal to IAG to give our members the same support as they are giving to their Spanish employees.

“Rather than seeking to preserve jobs and workers’ terms and conditions and act for the good of the UK aviation sector, British Airways is guilty of an act of smash and grab opportunism.

 “This is designed to boost its profits in the future and to try to force other operators out of the UK aviation sector.”

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