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BAA and Unite to hold strike negotiations

Airport operator aims to avoid walkout

13 August 2010

Airport operator BAA is set to hold strike negotiations with Unite in a bid to avoid planned industrial action.

Yesterday (August 12th), members of the Unite union voted three-to-one in favour of walkouts over pay.

The proposed strike by key employees such as security guards, firemen and engineers could close six UK airports, including Heathrow, Edinburgh and Stansted.

Negotiations to avert the walkouts could take place as early as Monday (August 16th), with conciliatory service Acas claiming both sides have agreed to a meeting.

Peter Harwood, chief conciliator of Acas, said: "We can confirm that Acas will be facilitating an early meeting of the parties once diaries can be cleared."

BAA, which has been hit by the economic downturn and the volcanic ash cloud, offered staff a 1.5 per cent salary increase but this was swiftly rejected by Unite.

Unite must give seven days notice to any industrial action, meaning strikes could be held on August 23rd if no agreement is reached on Monday. 

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