Unions scrap strikes after BAA climbdown
UK - Strikes at seven British airports have been called off after BAA scheme members voted to accept a pensions deal.
Following negotiations last Monday, the strike planned for 7 January had already been called off pending further talks this week.
But Unite, the union which represents airport firefighters, security, maintenance, administrative and clerical staff, said the remaining two strikes scheduled for the 14 and 17 January have also been cancelled after BAA withdrew its decision to close its final salary pension to new entrants.
Strikes were planned to take place at Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, Southampton, Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeeen, however members of both Unite and the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCSU) voted to accept the agreement after BAA management agreed to hold proper consultations over the future of the pension scheme.
Brendan Gold, national aviation secretary at Unite, said: "It is a total vindication of the action taken by our members in voting to defend their pension scheme."
He stated members had been left with no other option except to strike and confirmed the parties have now "achieved agreement that there will be no interference with our members' pension scheme without proper talks".
"Our members' pension scheme is financially sound, and there is no reason to close it to new entrants. We are glad that BAA accepts that no changes should be introduced without proper consultation," added Gold.
A spokesman for BAA said: "We welcome the announcement by trade unions today that an agreement has been reached and all proposed industrial action has been cancelled. This is good news for our passengers and airline customers."
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