BA strikes up in the air again as judges consider cabin crew appeal - News & Advice - Travel - The Independent

BA strikes up in the air again as judges consider cabin crew appeal

The High Court is to re-examine an injunction it granted blocking British Airways cabin crew from starting 20 days of strike action. The Unite union will learn tomorrow whether it will be given permission to appeal against the ban. The strike had been due to start yesterday, but was thwarted late on Monday after the court ruled that Unite had not followed the correct procedure because it failed to inform its members of 11 papers that had been spoiled in the ballot. The decision prompted an immediate response from Unite, which swiftly sought to challenge the decision at the Royal Courts of Justice in London.

Yesterday the country's most senior judge, the Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge, chaired a three-member panel to decide whether the judgment should be overturned. After more than three hours of counsel, the judges said it would deliver its verdict at 9.30am tomorrow. Should the decision falls in Unite's favour, an appeal hearing could follow almost immediately.

At the start of yesterday's proceedings, John Hendy QC, for Unite, told the court that if the appeal judges discharged the injunction, then industrial action would be "reinstated from an appropriate time thereafter". But a failure could see Unite take the battle to the Supreme Court. The union, which represents at least 90 per cent of cabin crew staff, would also have the option to hold another ballot for industrial action, which would be the third such attempt since November last year, when the first two ballots were declared invalid on technicalities.

David Reade QC, for BA, said it was the company's case there had been a "complete failure" by the union to discharge its obligations in relation to the communication to members of the relevant information about the ballot result.

Earlier Unite's joint general secretary Derek Simpson added that the union had done its utmost to tell its 12,000 members about the 11 ballot papers. "We posted it on the web, we put notices on our noticeboard and we distributed leaflets," he said.

Brendan Barber, general secretary of the TUC, said he hoped an appeal hearing was granted, warning that a basic right to industrial action was at risk. "Yesterday's judgment... sets a worrying precedent that calls into question whether unions will have the right to organised lawful industrial action in the future," he said.

Despite the ruling in favour of BA on Monday, some passengers still faced disruption yesterday, with the airline unable to reinstate all flights. BA said that at Heathrow, 90 per cent of long-haul and 50 per cent of short-haul flights were operating normally, meaning they would fly 60,000 people, compared with a normal number for the time of year of 85,000.

Bob Crowe, general secretary of the RMT union, suggested the Unite ballot was more legitimate than the polling in the general election. He said: "The new Tory Transport Secretary has welcomed the BA judgment and yet thousands of people were denied votes... on 6 May without the politicians lifting a finger. The whole of the new House of Commons was elected in a way that would have declared every single one of them null and void if they were subjected to the same rules as the trade unions – the political hypocrisy is breathtaking."

The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations

News
John Travolta is a qualified airline captain and employed the pilot with his company, Alto
people'That was the lowest I’d ever felt'
Life and Style
healthIt isn’t greasy. It doesn’t smell. And moreover, it costs nothing
Arts and Entertainment
Emma Thompson and Bryn Terfel are bringing Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street to the London Coliseum
theatre

Returning to the stage after 20 years makes actress feel 'nauseous'

News
peopleThe Times of India said actress should treat it as a 'compliment'
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Property
Home body: Badger stays safe indoors
property
News
The programme sees four specialists creating what they believe are three perfect couples, based on scientific matchmaking. The couples will not meet until they walk down the aisle together
tvUK wedding show jilted
Arts and Entertainment
US pop diva Jennifer Lopez sang “Happy Birthday” to Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, president of Turkmenistan
musicCorporate gigs become key source of musicians' income
Arts and Entertainment
You've been framed: Henri Matisse's colourful cut-outs at Tate Modern
artWhat makes a smash-hit art show
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
filmsDaniel Craig believed to be donning skis as 007 for first time
Student
The Guildhall School of Music and Drama is to offer a BA degree in Performance and Creative Enterprise
student

Top conservatoire offers ‘groundbreaking’ arts degree

Sport
Mikel Arteta pictured during Borussia Dortmund vs Arsenal
champions league
Voices
Yes supporters gather outside the Usher Hall, which is hosting a Night for Scotland in Edinburgh
voicesBen Judah: Is there a third option for England and Scotland that keeps everyone happy?
Arts and Entertainment
Pulp-fiction lover: Jarvis Cocker
booksJarvis Cocker on Richard Brautigan
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    IT Administrator - Graduate

    £18000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: ***EXCELLENT OPPORTUNITY FO...

    USA/Florida Travel Consultants £30-50k OTE Essex

    Basic of £18,000 + commission, realistic OTE of £30-£50k : Ocean Holidays: Le...

    Marketing Executive / Member Services Exec

    £20 - 26k + Benefits: Guru Careers: A Marketing Executive / Member Services Ex...

    Sales Account Manager

    £15,000 - £25,000: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic opportunity has arisen for ...

    Day In a Page

    Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

    A shot in the dark

    Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
    His life, the universe and everything

    His life, the universe and everything

    New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
    Reach for the skies

    Reach for the skies

    From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
    These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

    12 best hotel spas in the UK

    Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
    These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

    Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

    Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
    Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

    Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

    His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
    'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

    'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

    Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
    Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

    Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

    The Imitation Game, film review
    England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

    England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

    Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
    Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

    Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

    Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
    ‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

    ‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

    Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week