BA and Unite deadlocked as cabin crew talks collapse

BRITISH Airways cabin staff are likely to be balloted for more walkouts in July after talks between the carrier and Unite the Union broke down yesterday.

Acas, the reconciliation service, said the parties were “regrettably… unable to move closer to an agreement” following discussions over whether striking staff would have their travel perks reinstated.

Industrial action by unionised BA employees, originally organised in protest at cuts in crew numbers on long-haul flights, has already disrupted 22 days of travel and cost the airline £150m. BA’s market value fell six per cent in May as passenger numbers dropped 14.2 per cent year-on-year.

Unite has vowed to hold a fresh strike ballot if no deal is reached soon, raising the prospect of strife over the peak summer months.

Acas, which has held separate meetings with management and union leaders, said: “At present there are no further meetings planned, but Acas will monitor developments and our services remain available.”

A Unite spokesperson said: “Unite remains committed to finding a settlement which addresses its members’ concerns.”

A BA spokesperson said: “We remain committed to talks.”

Shares in BA closed 2p lower at 210.9p yesterday, giving the company a market capitalisation of £2.5bn.