Thousands of UK workers employed by Swissport, a provider of ground and cargo handling services at various UK airports, have voted to accept a 10% pay rise.
The staff work in cargo, baggage handling and check-in operations and are members of the trade union GMB. A total of 61% voted to accept the highest pay deal in Swissport’s history.
As part of the deal, workers were also given increased overtime multipliers, while other allowances have been raised.
A Swissport spokesperson said: “We are pleased to have delivered the biggest pay rise in our history, following collaborative discussions with our union colleagues. This deal, along with other improvements such as 28-day rosters to help our people effectively manage their work-life balance, is a testament to the dedication of our employees and reflects the cost-of-living pressures we are all facing.”
Matt Roberts, national officer at GMB, said: “During the pandemic, aviation workers faced [a] bonfire of jobs, pay and terms and conditions, far beyond people in other sectors. The public saw the airport chaos resulting from these mistakes as the country came out of the restrictions, but employers had either ditched or broken their loyal staff.
“Bosses in the aviation sector must now continue to rebuild; investing big in our aviation workers. By negotiating with GMB to value and retain workers, there is a chance for employers to avoid a repeat of chaos for holidaymakers this summer.”
Last year, UK Swissport employees voted to accept an 8.54% pay hike which was paid in January 2022, along with a payment to account for a smaller 2.4% rise, backdated to January 2020. There will also be a retention bonus of £1,000 for staff who remain in their roles until October 2022.