British Airways (BA) today insisted that it expects Unite to ballot staff on the airline's latest offer to settle a long-running industrial dispute despite continued oppostion from the union's cabin crew division, Bassa.
The company had asked Unite to recommend the peace offer, which includes use of the Acas conciliation service for the 16 crew who have been dismissed during the year-long dispute.
But Bassa has called the agreement "a step too far", claiming it demanded that the union relinquish outstanding legal claims against the airline and forced workers to accept the company's right to withdraw travel perks.
"While there are some good parts within BA's offer there are many other clauses which we simply as a trade union cannot recommend," the union said. "We simply cannot be held to ransom."
A BA spokesman stressed that the airline's negotiations have been with Unite. "It has already said in a statement that it will ballot its members with the latest offer, which is obviously good news," he said. "We have not heard anything different."
The latest developments come a week after Unite lost its case in the Court of Appeal against BA's move to cut the number of cabin crew staff.