Posts Tagged ‘High Court’

Reduced Boxing Day train services hit travellers and retailers

Monday, December 26th, 2011

A strike by London Underground drivers, and a countrywide reduction in the number of train services, has meant travel problems for many who planned to travel over Boxing Day. LU tried last week to have the decision by the Aslef union to call its members out on strike blocked in the High Court. However, the judge said that the move was legal and permitted it to go ahead.

Mick Whelan, Aslef’s general secretary, said the dispute was over the rights of workers to take quality time off during the Christmas period. The union is demanding that those who do come into work on Boxing Day should be awarded triple pay, and a day off in lieu.

Chief operating officer for London Underground, Howard Collins, said that everything was being done to reduce the number of workers needed on the bank holiday. He has accused Aslef of ignoring the union agreements which are already in place governing levels of pay and work.

According to Colin Stanbridge of the London Chamber of Commerce, Aslef has been attempting to hold retailers to ransom at a time when a fragile economy is having to battle against weak consumer confidence and high unemployment.

Labour has slammed the coalition for failing to keep the trains running over Boxing Day. However, the Department for Transport claims that the number of services being run is comparable to recent Boxing Days, and has hit back at Labour saying that the party had failed to condemn the industrial action on the Tube.

British Airways announces passenger increase

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

Following the devastation of the world’s banking crisis in which business travellers all but disappeared, British Airways has announced that, in October, it carried 4.6 per cent more premium class passengers than in the same month a year ago. Overall, passenger numbers were up for the airline by 3.9 per cent on last October. However, load factor was reduced by a percentage point for the month to 79.8 per cent.

Total passenger numbers increased from 2.76 million last October to 2.95 million this year. The number of passengers travelling in non-premium seats was also up by 3.7 per cent on a year ago.

The Court of Appeal this week delivered its ruling on BA’s decision to reduce the number of cabin crew it dedicates to services flying out of London’s main airport, Heathrow. A year ago, BA announced it would be reducing staff numbers as a cost cutting measure. Cabin crew union Unite rejected that plan claiming it would be in breach of contract and brought the case in front of the High Court.

The High Court found in favour of BA, but Unite was not content. The matter was then sent to the Court of Appeal. On Wednesday, the appellate court announced it would be upholding the decision of the High Court.

British Airways said it was pleased that its modest changes to crew numbers could remain in place and that it had been vindicated over the contracts issue. However, Unite is soon to ballot cabin crew members over possible future strike action.

British Airways’ cabin crew fight returns to the courts

Monday, September 20th, 2010

As neither side seems to be gaining any headway in the dispute between British Airways and cabin crew union Unite, the fight looks set to return to the courts. Unite said it intends to go to the Court of Appeal with a claim that BA’s staff reduction plans, the catalyst for the ongoing arguments, was actually a breach of contract.

BA has strongly denied to accusation pointing out that in February, the High Court ruled that the cost cutting measure was an acceptable one. A spokesman for the airline said it was prepared to fight against the accusation in the strongest possible terms.

As well as approaching the Appeals Court, Unite said it would be asking the European Court of Human Rights to look into how the Government deals with union ballots. BA was able to get an injunction against a proposed walk out because it claimed a number of the voting papers had been spoilt by union members making the whole vote invalid.

The union also intends to take up the matter of travel concessions with the High Court. Originally a dispute over staff reductions the fight between BA and Unite is now about the loss of travel perks to some 7,000 union members. BA initially told its staff that if they decided to walk out, they risked losing non-contractual concessions. Unite has been demanding that these perks be given back before any peace deal can be reached.

A spokesman for Unite said it was regrettable that the dispute would be returning to the legal arena, but added that BA’s unwillingness to compromise left no other choice.