Border Force staff plan another Heathrow strike

More than 500 Border Force staff at Heathrow airport are set to take a further three days of strike action in a dispute over a new roster.

The strike by members of the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) will hit the end of the half-term holidays on May 31 and June 1-2.

The union said: “The members are committed to the action and expect that their walkouts will disrupt passport checks for travellers coming into the UK at Heathrow airport.”

The strike be followed by three weeks of action short of a strike that will include a work-to-rule and overtime ban running from June 4-25.

The union said: “The strike action on 29, 30 April, 1 and 2 May was well supported and members were clearly in favour of further action should there be no movement from the Home Office.

“Following the end of the last strike action at the beginning of May, we wrote to the Home Office again highlighting the many problems raised with the new roster system and reminding the employer there remains widespread disquiet and anger from members over this.

“The Home Office public statement during the strike action said they were ‘disappointed’ in the strike action but ‘open to discussing a resolution’.

“We have set out to the Home Office that we are keen to try to find a resolution. But it was only following the threat of further strike action that the Home Office has only just indicated they are willing to meet however, as yet there’s been no consideration of the impact of the new roster on staff nor has the employer come back with any proposed changes. Therefore, as it stands the action will go ahead.”

A Home Office spokesperson said: “We are disappointed with the union’s decision to strike but remain open to discussing a resolution with PCS Union.

“The changes we are implementing will bring the working arrangements for Border Force Heathrow staff in line with the way staff work at all other major ports, provide them with more certainty on working patterns, and improve the service to the travelling public.

“We have robust plans in place to minimise disruption where possible, but we urge passengers to check the latest advice from operators before they travel.”

A spokesperson for Heathrow said the airport is working closely with the Home Office to support its plans for minimising any impact on passengers. It said passengers saw no impact from the most recent action.

MoreTwo days of week-long Heathrow strike suspended [May 3]

Heathrow refuelling staff threaten May bank holiday strike [April 22]

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