Pilots’ union Balpa has blasted easyJet for “unilaterally shutting down” talks aimed at saving three UK bases.
The airline has announced the closure of Stansted, Newcastle and Southend bases, where 670 pilots and crew are based.
Balpa and the carrier had been in formal talks for several weeks aimed at mitigating the need for compulsory redundancies. However, the union claims talks were brought to a sudden halt.
“Talks had appeared to be going well and easyJet had just last week promised to consider Balpa’s suggestions and further meetings were planned. There was no warning that easyJet would take this step,” Balpa said.
Brian Strutton, Balpa general secretary, added: “This is an act of spectacular bad faith. Clearly easyJet management were just stringing our negotiating team along with no intention of reaching any kind of agreement.”
Balpa said it had put forward measures including part-time and part-year working “which would have significantly reduced the need for compulsory redundancies”.
EasyJet said it had been consulting since June, when it had proposed the closure of the three bases.
“We have not finished the consultation – just the collective part of the process,” it said.