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I am fast approaching that age where I am beginning to consider early retirement and am looking at my options. Whilst I am passionate about my work, I travel far too much and am looking for that midlife career change.
One of my options was to look at work around Heathrow and Gatwick. I have previously mentioned that I am a current airside pass holder (all areas) at LHR
I have researched the net and various agencies and have learnt the following.
There are certainly no quotas involved by the airlines or airports when hiring. In fact if you look at cabin crew and pilots most are UK nationals where families have been in the UK for more than 2 generations.
The catchement area for Heathrow for example, Hounslow, Hillingdon etc are filled with immigrants (I have no research whether to add legal or illegal) but the majority of people within catchment areas to work at the airport can not be described as long standing members of the Tory party or CBI.
Hence, the type of people who tend to apply for jobs at the airports, whether security or other work, come from demographic groups described in earlier posts.
Baggage handlers and airport workers tend to view the positions as jobs as appose to careers. There is a difference between a “job” and a “career” and I would suggest that most of the positions being spoken about in this thread are “jobs”.
Mention of the TSA and lack of ethnic minorities within the USA airport system was made. I dont necerssairly agree but the 2 major differences between the TSA and the UK airport security teams are:
1. TSA is a career and screening for job applicants appears to be far more onerous.
2. There are many agenecies who are paid commission to attract and place security staff at UK airports and this by the sheer nature, attracts peole looking for jobs. part time or otherwise.
There was talk on another thread about the lack of “white faces” (if anybody finds this comment offensive, I immediately apologize and will edit with a suitable alternative) at the border control/immigration desks. However, searching the website, there are no positions available and there is no hiring available at either the ports or the airports.
Commuting to “Heathrow City” is not exactly easy and once there, parking can also be an issue. Public transport is not exactly cheap.
Now, here’s the most contencious part of the post.
Its easier for a foreign national to get work at airports becasue unlike a British national whose murder or rape conviction could be seen, a foreign national’s cant be seen as there is no way to check.
So, when the question at the top of the thread is asked, “Should airlines and airport security companies employ such people?” Of course the answer is NO. However, until UK PLc decides to treat foreign nationals the same way as UK nationals where screenig is concenred, then this situation will continually occur.
Just before anyonbe does start to accuse me of racsim, which this post certainly was not intended to be, I too come from an ethnic minority background.