BA staff face fresh ballot

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The Independent Online

Plans for a fresh ballot of British Airways cabin crew are at an "advanced stage", it was announced yesterday as staff took part in the final phase of the current wave of strikes.

Members of the Unite union walked out for the 22nd day in the dispute which has cost the carrier more than £150m, with further action threatened for the summer. Len McCluskey, the assistant general secretary of Unite, told a noisy rally of strikers near Heathrow airport that the "fight for justice" would continue, adding that preparations for a fresh ballot were at an advanced stage.

He said the blame for continuing instability at the airline must be placed firmly at the door of BA management's "tough guy" stance.

Mr McCluskey said: "Comments about holding out for as long as it takes against the workforce should cause despair among BA board and shareholders."

He said the City should scrutinise more carefully the airline's claims about its strike-breaking operation.

"The question shareholders and the City must ask themselves is not how many planes took off, but how many passengers actually flew on BA flights?" he said.