Thursday 5 September 2019 11:53 am

British Airways strikes: Pilots could call off action if BA considers pay offer

British Airline pilots who are threatening to strike next week have said the industrial action could be averted if the airline considers a new pay offer it has put forward.

Pilots who are members of the British Airline Pilots’ Association (Balpa) are due to strike on 9, 10 and 27 September but have said they want the airline to consider a new proposal.

Read more: UK strikes Autumn 2019: All the dates for Tube, rail and British Airways action

The union is locked in a bitter dispute with the airline over pay and working conditions.

BA has said it has offered an 11.5 per cent increase over three years which has been accepted by the Unite and GMB unions.

General secretary Brian Strutton said: ““Our members’ resolve is very strong and they remain very angry with BA, but they also want to leave no stone unturned in trying to find a resolution to their dispute.

“Avoiding strike action and agreeing a deal with their pilots surely must be the desired outcome for British Airways.

Read more: Regulator raps British Airways over flight cancellation confusion

“We urge BA to join us to discuss the new proposal – which shows pilots are willing to be flexible but still stand united in getting a better deal.”

A BA spokesperson said: “We remain open to constructive talks with Balpa to resolve the pay negotiations, but we do not believe the union is acting in good faith by making an eleventh hour inflated proposal which would cost an additional £50m.

“We, at BA, have acted with integrity through many months of negotiations. We and the union’s leaders agreed and shook on a deal on Monday 12 August only for the union to back track on that agreement and return with new and unrealistic demands.

“Balpa has cynically waited until we have helped the vast majority of customers with alternative travel arrangements, and our planning for a strike has reached a critical stage. Our customers need the certainty that Balpa will call off the strikes for good, not just for two days next week.              

“Ninety per cent of our staff are already receiving the 11.5 per cent pay deal in their salaries, we urge Balpa to return to negotiations without pre-conditions, so that their members can do the same.”

The strikes will not BA CityFlyer, which flies out of London City Airport.

Meanwhile, BA’s reputation has dropped to a four-year low, according to reputation intelligence firm alva.

According to alva, BA’s reputation has dropped to 55th position out of 65 companies in its airline reputation index, due to the £183m fine it faces following the 2018 data breach and recent IT glitches.

A BA spokesperson said: “We are proud to fly more than 45m customers a year and, while challenges remain and change takes time to deliver in aviation, our customers are noticing the investments we are making.”