British Airways cabin crew begin voting on whether to take strike action in a long running dispute over pay and working conditions, while the airline starts training pilots, baggage handlers and engineers to take over the duties of flight attendants.
The Unite union called the vote after BA won a court order stopping workers from carrying out a planned walkout over the Christmas and New Year travel period.
The new ballot of some 12,000 cabin crew closes on February 22, which means that a strike could be called for as early as March 1, although Unite has pledged not to walk out over the busy Easter holiday period.
Workers are unhappy about changes to staffing and pay, including a pay freeze in 2010, a switch to part-time work for 3,000 staff and a reduction in cabin crew size.
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