BA staff get bonuses at last

British
Airways staff are to get their Christmas bonuses in April – four months late.

The
bonuses, the equivalent of a week’s pay, were suspended following 11 September
and cutbacks at the airline designed to save about £26m.

Unions
complained about the move, with the GMB union claiming that its threat to sue
for breach of contract forced the airline to make the payout.

However,
a BA spokeswoman said the decision to pay has no connection with the threats.

"We
made it clear from the outset that we intended to pay the amount when our
financial position improved," she said.

The
pay of middle and senior managers, which had been cut by 5 per cent and 10 per
cent respectively, plus the salaries of the board of directors, who took a 50
per cent cut in fees, will also be restored to pre-11 September levels.

She
said no bonuses will be paid and there will be no pay review this year until
the industry has recovered.

"I
am pleased that British Airways, when faced with the GMB challenge, has finally
realised that it is legally obligated to pay its employees according to their
contracts and has agreed to reimburse all BA workers accordingly.

"GMB
members at BA have been working hard to help the company since the tragedy of
11 September but, with some on salaries of £8,000, they could ill afford this
pay cut."

By Quentin Reade

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