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Holidaymakers could face a summer of chaos as airport workers vote to strike

by LLB staff reporter
25th May 23 1:41 pm

The Unite union has warned that passengers could face a summer of chaos as airport workers have voted for strike action over a pay dispute.

Unite said that 85% of their members voted for strike action and had a 75% turnout and security and terminal operators at Edinburgh Airport are set to walk out.

Workers at Edinburgh Airport rejected the pay offer which was made to staff at Gatwick for a £1,500 one off cash payment and a 12% increase that was accepted.

Edinburgh Airport offered Unite members a 11% pay rise and a £1,000 cash offer for the cost of living.

An Edinburgh Airport spokesman said: “This is a disappointing decision from Unite, especially after we met the ask of our unions – an 11% pay rise along with a £1,000 cost-of-living payment. We have made an improved offer to staff, with a 50% increase in the cost-of-living payment proposed. This has not yet been balloted on.

“Unite is insistent on comparing this offer to the one made at Gatwick but the important context missing from that comparison pushed by Unite is that this 11% increase at Edinburgh Airport would be the third pay rise given to the team since 2020, representing an overall increase of 19.6%. In contrast, this is the first offer made by Gatwick in the same time frame – a point Unite purposefully fails to note.

“We have proposed a deal that is well above what has been offered to many other workers in Scotland and is well above inflation. We still have serious concerns about the integrity of the original ballot and the number of members that voted – concerns Unite have failed to address.

“We have made every attempt to avert industrial action and to agree a well-deserved pay rise for all of our hardworking employees, not just the minority who are Unite members. We remain open to negotiating in good faith with our unions and have agreed to participate in future talks.”

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Unite’s members at Edinburgh Airport have emphatically backed strike action. The pay offer on the table is nowhere near good enough and airport bosses know it.

“A realistic pay offer needs to be put on the table which values our members in the same way as our members at Gatwick Airport.

“Unite will always support our members in the fight for better jobs, pay and conditions.”

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