Virgin Atlantic pilots plan Christmas strike

Virgin Atlantic plane at Gatwick airportImage copyright
PA

Some Virgin Atlantic pilots will strike from 22 December to Christmas Day in a dispute over union recognition, the Professional Pilots Union has said.

The union, which represents about a third of pilots at the airline, said it was excluded from talks over proposed changes to pilot benefits.

It said this was the first of a series of one to four-day strikes it wants to hold until the dispute is resolved.

Virgin Atlantic said it did not expect any disruption to its schedule.

The PPU said 72% of its Virgin Atlantic members turned out for a ballot, and 71.5% of those who voted backed strike action.

The other strikes are planned for 30 December to 2 January and 4 January to 7 January inclusive.

PPU spokesman Steve Johnson, a former Virgin pilot, said the union had conducted a work-to-rule action for two years to secure recognition by Virgin.

He said it was the “last straw” when the union was left out of negotiations after Virgin Atlantic “consistently refused to recognise the PPU as a legitimate and independent union”.

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