Chancellor must act to protect airline workers

09 Apr 2020
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GMB, the union for ground handling staff has urged the Chancellor to speed up access to the job retention scheme, claiming that “The collapse of the UK aviation has already begun”.

After the union campaigned for a bail out scheme that guaranteed workers’ pay during the Covid-19 outbreak, GMB have already welcomed the announcement of the scheme. However it’s becoming increasingly clear that the scheme won’t be available until the end of April which will leave many low paid workers nearly two months out of pocket.

In an open letter to the Chancellor the GMB, Unite and four ground handling companies say that without immediate access to the JRS many aviation employers could be forced into administration.

Nadine Houghton, GMB National Officer said:

“Many of GMB’s members in aviation live hand to mouth already but with so many laid off without pay in March they will now be wondering how they are going to feed their families.

“To go without pay in April would be catastrophic, if the JRS isn’t available by the end of next week that is exactly what will happen.

“This can’t be allowed. The JRS gave hope to so many struggling workers and now for our members in aviation it is starting to look like too little too late. We need government action to avert this crisis NOW.”

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