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Pay ‘takes-off’ for baggage & ground staff at Gatwick

Good news for easyJet ground staff and baggage handlers at Gatwick.

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Almost a thousand easyJet ground staff and baggage handlers at Gatwick airport employed by DHL have negotiated a pay boost worth on average 7.5% over two years.

The workers will also get a bonus worth over £500 a year and an increase in overtime payments, including double time for working on bank holidays. And in a further boost to workers’ terms and conditions the company’s sick pay policy has also been markedly improved.

More news: Police search for man after attack on woman in Crawley

The deal means that a typical worker would be in line for an increase of over £2000 in the first year of the deal including the bonus.

Unite regional officer, Jamie Major said:

“Baggage handlers and ground staff employed by DHL have negotiated a significant boost in pay well above the rate of inflation. During the pay talks Unite and DHL worked constructively to develop a transparent pay strategy which is fair and gives workers the opportunity to progress.

“Unite’s organising strategy has meant that hundreds of new members joined the union which in turn gave Unite more influence during negotiations. This above inflation pay deal once again shows that when pay is falling flat across the economy it pays to be in a union.”

Unite has launched a powerful online tool to help workers secure a fair share of company profits. Unite’s new online tool will mean that in just a few minutes, union reps can generate a professional pay claim. Almost 4000 Unite representatives have already used the Pay Claim Generator.

At the click of a mouse the tool allows union reps to gather the latest up-to-date information from Companies House, the Office for National Statistics and the union’s own database containing the details of tens of thousands of pay deals.

The Pay Claim Generator was designed as part of Unite’s industrial strategy entitled Work, Voice, Pay which is about empowering union members by giving them the tools and support in the workplace to help them win at work.

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Henry Smith MP: Reforming Air Passenger Duty

In his article this week Crawley MP Henry Smith talks about reforming air passenger duty to boost trade.

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One way for MPs to raise issues in Westminster is through All-Party Parliamentary Groups. These Groups typically contain members of the Commons and the Lords, and include parliamentarians from across the political spectrum.

I recently established and was elected to chair a new APPG on Air Passenger Duty Reform, which seeks to encourage the UK Government to cut the rate of Air Passenger Duty (APD).

While the Government confirmed at the October 2018 Budget that short-haul APD rates will not rise for the eighth year in a row, keeping costs down for 80 per cent of passengers, there remains more to be done.

With the Band B long-haul rate scheduled to rise by £16 on 1st April 2019, reforming APD will help the UK compete on a level playing field with our European counterparts, boosting tourism, trade, jobs and growth.

The UK APD rate is the highest tax of its kind in the world. It is twice as high as the next highest, Germany. On long-haul flights it currently adds £78 to an economy ticket.

As we leave the European Union and look to forge a new identity for ourselves in the world as a global nation, it is critical we have a tax system that reflects that ambition.

With Gatwick Airport in the Crawley boundary, a significant reduction in the UK’s APD rate would signal to the world that Britain is open for business.

Henry Smith MP

Crawley Constituency

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