Heathrow strikes: security guards at London airport to walkout over Easter - what is dispute about?

Heathrow Terminal Five will be hit with a 10-day strike held by more than 1,400 security guards over Easter. (Credit: Getty Images)Heathrow Terminal Five will be hit with a 10-day strike held by more than 1,400 security guards over Easter. (Credit: Getty Images)
Heathrow Terminal Five will be hit with a 10-day strike held by more than 1,400 security guards over Easter. (Credit: Getty Images) | Getty Images
More than 1,400 security guards at the UK’s busiest airport will strike for a total of 10 days over Easter

Security guards at Heathrow Airport are set to strike over the Easter holidays as they remain embroiled in a pay dispute with bosses.

More than 1,400 Heathrow Airports Ltd (HAL) workers at Terminal Five are set to take part in the industrial action which is set to begin on 31 March. The strike action is expected to last 10 days.

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Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Workers at Heathrow Airport are on poverty wages while the chief executive and senior managers enjoy huge salaries. It is the airport’s workers who are fundamental to its success and they deserve a fair pay increase.

“Our members are simply unable to make ends meet due to the low wages paid by Heathrow. They are being forced to take strike action due to need not greed,” she said. “Unite has a laser-like focus on prioritising the jobs, pay and conditions of its members and HAL needs to be in no doubt that the workers at the airport will receive the union’s unstinting support.”

While the airports security staff will be out on strike, Heathrow has assured customers that it will take measure to ensure that travel is not impacted. A Heathrow spokesperson said: “Passengers can be reassured that we have contingency plans which will keep the airport open and operational despite unnecessary threats of strike action by Unite.

“We have proposed an inflation-beating 10% increase in pay which the public will recognise is fair and a majority of our colleagues have told Unite is not worth striking over. We urge Unite to come back to the table to discuss implementing it.

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“Threatening to ruin people’s hard-earned holidays with strike action will not improve the deal. We want to do the right thing by our people and our passengers, each day only delays this pay rise reaching Unite members’ pockets.”

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