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A British Airways A380 approaches Heathrow. (Photo: AirlineGeeks | William Derrickson)

Heathrow Threatens Workers Over Pay Cuts

The busiest airport in Europe has threatened workers they might face the sack if they do not accept “voluntary” pay cuts, following a drop in passengers passing through the airport.

According to Sky News, the airport’s human resources chief informed thousands of staff that should anyone not accept a 15 percent pay reduction then “dismissal and reinstatement might be the final step.”

The statement, from Paula Stannett, said: “We are looking for everyone to play their part and are not expecting anyone to opt-out, other than those who are leaving us very shortly through redundancy.”

“There will be consequences if colleagues do not accept the revised terms as it will mean that we will have to make further job cuts,” the chief people officer said.

Heathrow recently closed one of its two runways, 09R/27L, due to the reduced number of flights in and out of the airport. Terminals 3 and 4, home to airlines such as Air France, American Airlines, Delta, Emirates, Etihad, KLM and Virgin Atlantic were closed this week with flights transferred to IAG’s Terminal 5 and Star Alliance’s Terminal 2.

The airport CEO, John Holland-Kaye, said he would be giving up his salary for three months and whilst unionized staff had already been asked to take a 10 percent reduction in salary, the airport made it clear that sackings are “an option that is legally available to the company to take.”

The drastic measures being made by the busiest airport in the United Kingdom highlights the monumental pressure that airports across Europe are facing. Regional airports across the U.K. will already be facing pressure following the collapse of regional airline Flybe, which in some cases represented more than 90 percent of all daily movements for the airport.

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