The impact of the UK government’s decision to impose a 14-day quarantine on incoming travelers (which came into effect June 8) looks set to push elements of the country’s airport industry over the brink, as Heathrow announces its current employment levels are no longer sustainable.
Passenger numbers through May were down 97% on the same period in 2019, a decline that has forced the airport to begin restructuring its front-line staffing, having already reduced managerial roles by a third.
Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye, explained, “Throughout this crisis, we have tried to protect front-line jobs, but this is no longer sustainable, and we have now agreed a voluntary severance scheme with our union partners. While we cannot rule out further job reductions, we will continue to explore options to minimize the number of job losses.”
Heathrow, along with airlines and other airports, is urging the government to rapidly establish ‘air bridges’ with countries where Covid-19 infection rates are low, as well as a 12-month waiver on business rates for airports in England and Wales. The latter demand is based on a similar concession given to Scottish airports by the devolved administration in Holyrood, Edinburgh.
Click here for further information on the challenges facing Heathrow.