British Airways has "forced" 4000 workers out of their jobs by "naked, company greed”, the UK's largest trade union said on Friday.
Airport staff, cabin crew, engineers are who have been the recipient of letters from the airline informing them if they will be made redundant or not.
“This is a very bleak day for the incredible BA workforce and will go down in the history of the airline as the day that it put the interests of the boardroom ahead of its passengers and workforce", Howard Beckett, Unite’s assistant general secretary said.
“These workers have given years of dedicated service to this company, some as many as 40 years, and indeed to our country, as many were involved in the repatriation of British citizens at the outset of this pandemic".
The union urged the company employees not to "sign or accept anything that this company puts to you without first consulting your union".
“Today they will be dismissed by email by an employer whose spiteful mistreatment of them is nothing other than despicable", they said.
“This is a very bleak day for the incredible BA workforce and will go down in the history of the airline as the day that it put the interests of the boardroom ahead of its passengers and workforce".
British Airways have said that they are trying to “protect as many jobs as possible” and that more 6,000 workers leaving have applied for voluntary redundancy.
In April, International Airlines Group (IAG), the umbrella company that owns BA, that 12,000 of the 42,000 headcounts will lose their jobs amid the coronavirus pandemic and economic crash.
According to PA News, 40% of cabin crew, generally among the lowest paid, will see a small wage increase. Other workers will see a basic pay cut by 20%, although it is claimed by some that they see an actual reduction of 50% due to terms and conditions revisions.
Pilots have voted to reduce their own packages and accept pay cuts to avoid wider scale redundancies. The British Airline Pilots' Association (BALPA) said that there will be 270 compulsory redundancies wage decreases beginning at 20%.
British Airways is currently operating at 20% of its capacity due to a collapse in demand and restrictions on travel because of the ongoing pandemic.
The airline says it does not expect demand for air travel to return to pre-crisis levels until 2023 at the earliest.