BA cabin crew union begins new strike ballot

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The Independent Online

Union officials representing cabin crew at British Airways have started preparing for a fresh ballot giving a mandate for a strike. Unite sent a letter to BA yesterday to inform management of its decision to hold a second ballot.

It is expected to be held early in the new year in time for industrial action against the airline to start by the end of January or in February. A ballot is likely to take two weeks to be completed and the union has to give a week's notice that it is to take place and a further seven days' notice of any strike approved by members.

Union officials had planned for a 12-day strike to start next Tuesday, ruining the Christmas travel plans of a million passengers, but the ballot was ruled illegal by a High Court judge. Officials are taking legal advice about overturning the ruling in the Court of Appeal.

In a statement yesterday, the union said: "Unite ... is expected to move swiftly towards a fresh ballot, believing it to be the surest way to ensure members' voices are heard, so we will be concentrating on this and not a protracted legal process."