LONDON – British Airways (BA) has today said it has reached the halfway point of job cuts, with 6,000 already axed.

The airline wants a total of 12,000 jobs cut in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Letters to remaining staff will be sent out today, confirming to those affected whether their jobs have been lost.

If they still have a job, they will be required to accept a new contract or stay on their old one.

Photo: Roberto Leiro

BA’s Measures

British Airways on average burns £20m per day, so the rush towards keeping costs down is continuing.

The IAG-owned airline is only operating around 20% of its schedule.

A spokesman for BA commented on the cuts, with the view of wanting to protect jobs.

“We are having to make difficult decisions and take every possible action now to protect as many jobs as possible”.

The airline also announced last week it would keep its headquarters at London Heathrow (LHR) empty.

Photo: Roberto Leiro

Union Opposition

The Unite union, which represents cabin Crew, stated that the costs have gone far beyond the original proposals.

On top of this, the airline has been accused of bringing in significant pay reductions for staff that it will keep on.

This is somewhere in the figure of around a 70% pay cut.

Unite has threatened strike action as it aims to drum up political support.

However, the airline has agreed deals with the British Air Line Pilots Association (BALPA).

A pay cut of 20% and only 270 job cuts have been agreed, which is far less than the over 1,100 initially proposed to be on the slate.

Photo: Roberto Leiro

Questions to be Asked

British Airways has come into the spotlight considerably over the last few weeks because of the job cuts.

This has been seen particularly with the UK Government’s Transport Select Committee.

Criticism by the committee had come into place following the report from June 2020. It condemned the behavior of the airline over job cuts.

British Airways Boeing 777-236ER [G-VIIB] | Photo: © Aaron Davis

The Chairman and CEO of British Airways (BA), Alex Cruz will appear before this Committee.

The session will commence on September 16 and will provide an update on the challenges faced by the airline.

It will ultimately be interesting to see what happens next month at this committee.

Questions will be asked, fingers will be pointed, but what action can we expect to see from it?

Only time will tell.

Featured Image: British Airways Boeing 787 Dreamliner. Picture by: Stuart Bailey