Virgin Atlantic’s Hong Kong crew to go on strike

21 Dec 2015 by Clement Huang
Virgin Atlantic customers due to travel to London from Hong Kong this Christmas may experience delays after the British carrier announced that its Hong Kong-based cabin crew would be staging a wildcat strike starting today. The South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported last month that Virgin Atlantic would be laying off 50 of its Hong Kong cabin crew, about two-thirds of its total strength, as part of a cost-cutting exercise. The redundancies were targeted at cabin service supervisors and senior cabin crew members, with the junior staff unaffected by the cut. As part of a last-ditch effort to save their jobs, the affected crew members have decided to pursue industrial action, which is expected to last until January 1, 2016. The strike will only affect the London-bound Virgin Atlantic flight VS207. Carol Ng Man-yee, secretary-general of the Hong Kong Cabin Crew Federation, told the SCMP that Virgin Atlantic has refused to enter into talks with the affected workers or the union to discuss the job losses. The Virgin Atlantic Hong Kong Cabin Crew Union has addressed the issue in a letter, in which it expressed disappointment, and accused the airline of discrimination and unfair treatment. “We feel the loyalty and trust that we have built with the company throughout the years has been lost. We are still hoping for an amicable solution in resolving this matter in a peaceful and harmonious manner.” Virgin Atlantic issued a statement in which it highlighted that it was aware of the situation and was taking steps to ensure that there would be minimal impact on flights during the busy Christmas period. “We are aware of reports of potential strike action by our Hong Kong-based cabin crew and we would like to reassure our customers that we do not expect this to impact our flights,” said Virgin Atlantic spokesperson Sarah Coggins to the SCMP. “Our priority is to ensure that our customers’ travel plans are not affected during the holiday period, and we will therefore have additional crew available to fly on the route between London and Hong Kong.” For more information, visit Clement Huang
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