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‘No other choice’

Baggage handlers and check-in staff at Luton Airport begin strike vote
Ciaran Naidoo, Wednesday, January 30th, 2019

Baggage handlers and check-in staff employed by Azzurra Ground Handling at Luton Airport will begin voting for industrial action today (January 30) over the company’s decision to impose a pay freeze on hard-working staff.


Unite which represents the majority of workers at Azzurra submitted a pay claim at the beginning of 2018 but despite numerous attempts to get meaningful pay talks underway the company has refused to engage with the workforce.


Azzurra provides ground-handling services to Wizz Air at Luton Airport. Wizz Air is a low-cost airline with around 42 routes from Luton.


“Luton Airport is one of the busiest airports in the UK and Azzurra should be recognising the contribution baggage handlers and check- in staff make by increasing pay so workers can keep up with the rising cost of living,” said Unite regional officer Jeff Hodge.


“The union has been calling for meaningful talks since the beginning of 2018. Azzurra’s failure leaves workers with no other choice but to begin a ballot for strike action,” he added. “If a strike goes ahead it will lead to considerable disruption to flights out of Luton. We hope the company will now sit down with the workers’ representatives and resolve this dispute.”


Cleaners at Luton Airport employed by Sasse recently voted to end their strike over pay after the workers voted to back an improved pay offer from the company. Cleaners on the day shift will receive an increase of 5 per cent and night shift workers will get a 6 per cent increase backdated to October 2018 up to April 2019, followed by a 3 per cent increase for the day shift and a 4 per cent increase for the night shift from April 2019 to April  2020.



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