Heathrow ground handlers to strike on Friday after rejecting pay offer

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Unite the Union has confirmed that ground handlers at Heathrow will go on strike on Friday after members rejected the latest pay offer from employer Menzies Aviation.

Ground handlers at Britain’s biggest airport will walk out at 4am on Friday 16th December for 72 hours, with a further 72-hour strike planned from 4am on 29th December. The pay dispute involves more than 400 workers employed as ground handlers at Heathrow terminals 2,3 and 4.

Unite highlighted how the post-Christmas walkout from ground handlers will coincide with a planned strike by Border Force staff.

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“This is a classic case of an employer that can fully afford to pay workers a fair pay increase but has chosen not to,” United General Secretary Sharon Graham said. “Menzies needs to stop making excuses and make a pay offer that meets our members’ expectations.”

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“We are extremely disappointed that Unite has rejected the pay increase despite GMB accepting the offer. Our offer of a 10.5% salary increase is extremely competitive and reflects feedback from our employees,” Miguel Gomez Sjunnesson, EVP Europe, Menzies Aviation, said. “It is a great shame that as a result of Unite rejecting the offer, strike action will now fall on one of the busiest weekends of the year as people travel to meet family and friends for Christmas.”

Reassuring travellers, Sjunnesson stated that “we are well prepared for industrial action and have been working closely with key partners to put in place robust contingency plans,” adding that Menzies Aviation remains “committed to ensuring that our employees receive their increase as soon as possible and hope to be able to resolve this matter soon.”