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Heathrow Airport workers to renew strike action against fire and rehire

HEATHROW Airport workers are set to renew strike action against its fire-and-rehire attack on pay and conditions.

Workers across the airport have already taken four days of strike action against savage pay cuts of up to 25 per cent — £8,000 in some cases — which have plunged many into poverty and forced some to sell their homes.

Firefighters, engineers, security personnel, baggage handlers and operational staff employed by Heathrow Airport Limited (HAL) will strike at different times on February 5 in a dispute that the Unite union insists “is not going away.”

“The management at the airport are guilty of using the Covid-19 pandemic to force through long-held plans to cut workers’ pay,” said Unite regional officer Wayne King.

He said the key workers involved had put themselves and their families at risk throughout the pandemic, and it was “unimaginable” that any employer could believe it was acceptable to cut their pay permanently.

Unite said that concerns over the safety of HAL’s contingency plans during industrial action, particularly the adequacy of firefighter cover, had been “summarily dismissed.”

HAL expressed disappointment at the announcement and said that its contingency plans had been approved by the Civil Aviation Authority and the Transport Department.

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