Steven Manzanero set up this petition – adddressed to Boris Johnson, Rishi Sunak, Matt Hancock and Therese Coffey.
“British Airways (BA) announced that it is to make 12,000 UK workers at the airline redundant. This is without any consultation with the UK’s aviation unions. This is within the backdrop of BA parent owner IAG having secured over a billion euros in funding to save its sister airlines Aer Lingus, Iberia, Level, Vueling, and IAGcargo. None of which so far has seen anywhere near the number of redundancies announced by Alex Cruz CEO of BA. What is also interesting is that Wille Walsh, Chief Executive of IAG, has not stopped the billion euro purchase or Air Europa.
“BA through its action so far has shown that it had no intentions whatsoever to stick to the principles laid out by Rishi Sunak when the chancellor launched the UK job retention scheme in April. A scheme that BA has taken full advantage of, and let’s not forget, is funded exclusively by the UK taxpayer.
“BA, with the consent of its parent company IAG, has actively targeted the UK and its workforce, claiming it will be making a loss in the region of £550m and that these cuts are necessary, which is a total fallacy if we are to believe the statement issued on the 30th of March.
“To put this into context on the 30th of March this year IAG/BA released the following statement:
“International Airlines Group (IAG) announces that British Airways has extended its US dollar secured Revolving Credit Facility for one year from 23 June 2020 to 23 June 2021. The amount available under the extended facility is $1.38 billion. Including the extended facility and some smaller additional facilities recently arranged, IAG has total undrawn general and committed aircraft financing facilities equivalent to €2.1 billion currently, compared to €1.9 billion at the end of 2019. IAG has not drawn down on any of its facilities.
“Well, what does this mean to you I the UK taxpayer? It’s simple really, BA actually has enough money to call on to help it through this crisis but they have chosen to use the TAX payer to fund it. As you and I, the hard-working UK taxpayer, funded BA, a corporation with billions in cash to call upon, the UK CEO Alex Cruz drew up his plans to get rid of 12000 people in the UK ONLY paying them as little as possible.
“I urge you all to look a little further into this as it’s plain to see that IAG also has money via loans and cash reserves and its 25% stakeholders Qatar Air who in turn is owned by the state of Qatar, which as we all know is one of the richest countries in the world.
“However, having all this money to call on means nothing to Wille Walsh and Alex Cruz, they have used COVID-19 to target the UK workforce to just throw them aside, some of them having almost 50 years’ experience. Alex Cruz has already made it clear that he will give the government maximums, which is as follow. The length of service is capped at 20 years. If you were made redundant on or after 6 April 2020, your weekly pay is capped at £538 and the maximum statutory redundancy pay you can get is £16,140. While you may be thinking well that’s a lot of money and it is BA has been offering redundancy packages in line with earnings for the last 6 years but Willie Walsh and Alex Cruz are using this to get rid of people for as little as possible. Also please remember those that have done almost 50 years’ service will be written off as cheaply as possible by a money rich corporate. I am not sure how these people can actually sleep at night.
“So I am asking all of you to please sign this petition to urge the UK government to bring Willie Walsh and Alex Cruz to account immediately.
“This is one of the biggest scams I have seen in my lifetime and these people need to face the UK public. Alex Cruz with the blessing of Wille Walsh have helped themselves to our hard-earned money and actively targeted our workforce over others.
“Lastly, if you cant sign this for the BA staff about to lose their jobs or the Uk TAX Payer then sign it for the BA staff that have been risking their lives repatriating UK citizens without the necessary PPE equipment while BA billed the UK government millions to bring our people home.”