Union suspends Heathrow refueling employee strike

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Image Source: Arabian Business

The refueling worker’s Union strike scheduled to occur at Heathrow Airport later this week has been postponed.

In a dispute over compensation, a total of 50 employees from Aviation Fuel Services (AFS) were scheduled to go on strike for three days starting on Thursday. However, the Unite union said on Wednesday that following negotiations; a new compensation offer was now on the table, members will now vote on the new offer.

According to the union, discussions at Acas on Wednesday on conflict resolution resulted in the new offer from AFS. Kevin Hall, a regional representative for Unite, said: “According to Unite, AFS is capable of presenting an offer that is more likely to satisfy members’ expectations. Acas’ assistance led to a better offer being made.

Virgin, United, KLM, and Air France are the carriers that would have been impacted. After three years of no salary raises, the AFS employees had rejected a 10% compensation increase.

In recent months, passengers have experienced delays and cancellations, mostly because of a lack of qualified employees in the aviation sector. As demand for international travel has increased, airports and airlines that slashed staff during the height of the coronavirus pandemic have had a difficult time filling positions.

Heathrow Airport has, as a result, demanded airlines cease selling summer tickets and set a daily passenger cap.

AFS’s representative stated: “Unite has agreed to postpone industrial action while a ballot on a revised offer is made, which AFS is happy to affirm. As a result, AFS will run on its regular schedule at Heathrow Airport during the next few days.

Many unions and workers in the UK are requesting salary hikes as prices are rising at the quickest rate in 40 years. Several groups have recently gone on strike or voted in favor of labor action, including train drivers, postal employees, and Heathrow check-in staff.

The annual rate of inflation, which measures how quickly prices grow, increased to 9.4 percent in the year ending in June from 9.1 percent in May and is expected to rise further this year.

According to the Bank of England and the government, wage increases to keep up with the present cost of living may lead to more inflation.

Joint venture AFS is made up of the companies BP, Total Energies, Q8 Aviation, and Valero Energy.

Flight schedule impacted recently by union activities

As the UK’s busiest airport struggles to handle the uptick in air travel, you may recall that Heathrow Airport instructed airlines to stop selling summer tickets in July.

Over the busiest summer months, the airport will cap the number of passengers who can depart each day to 100,000, which is 4,000 fewer than originally planned.

Read Also: Heathrow: Flight cancellations cause queues and chaos

From now until September 11th, there will be a limit on the number of passengers.

There have been recent delays that have impacted thousands of UK travelers, including last-minute cancellations.

As demand for vacations has increased, airports and airlines that slashed employees during Covid lockdowns have found it difficult to fill open positions. As the school year comes to an end, the UK is set to enter the crucial summer vacation period.