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22 May 2023

Heathrow claims flights won't be cancelled during half-term strike by security staff

22 May 2023

No flights will be cancelled during next week’s “completely unnecessary” half-term strike by Heathrow security officers, the airport said.

Members of union Unite working at Terminal 5 will walk out from May 25 to 27 in a dispute over pay.

Heathrow said its contingency plans, which include deploying extra staff, have delivered “excellent passenger service” throughout previous strike periods, with “almost all” travellers waiting less than 10 minutes to pass through security.

These strikes are completely unnecessary

The airport urged Unite to put its proposal of a 10% pay increase and £1,150 lump sum to a vote of its members, saying: “We know the majority of colleagues want to accept this offer.”

Heathrow chief executive John Holland-Kaye said: “Passengers should not be concerned about strike action by Unite over the half-term getaway.

“The 15 days of strike action over the Easter peak and coronation weekends have had no impact on the smooth running of the airport, and passengers have not noticed any difference from the normal great service they expect at Heathrow.

“These strikes are completely unnecessary. When I speak to colleagues the overwhelming message is that they just want to vote on our pay offer, but Unite won’t let them.

“We made a generous 10% offer early on to make sure colleagues got a substantial increase when they needed it most.

“Unite’s delays mean non-union colleagues – as well as the majority of colleagues who are union members who voted to accept our previous offer – are losing out.”

The union previously said its members have been “crystal clear they are seeking a substantial permanent increase in pay”.

Many families will embark on holidays next week as the majority of schools in England and Wales are closed for half-term.

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