Cabin crew welfare concerns highlighted

Concerns are being highlighted over the welfare of cabin crew working on the few long-haul flights still operating during the global coronavirus epidemic.

The British Airline Pilots Association first raised attention to the issue on Tuesday, claiming that no clarity had been given about the financial support promised or the health and safety of the workers involved in government repatriation efforts.

The concern emerged after foreign secretary Dominic Raab revealed a £75 million scheme to repatriate ten of thousands of British travellers stuck overseas.

Airlines including Virgin Atlantic, easyJet, Jet2 and Titan Airways have agreed to assist with British Airways also joining relief efforts.

A claim has since been made that a number of BA cabin crew fear they may have contracted the virus, according to the BBC.

BA responded in a statement saying: “We follow all the guidance from the UK government and global health authorities, including Public Health England and the World Health Organisation.

“We have taken several steps to greatly reduce contact between customers and crew, and personal protective equipment is available to them.

“Like other forms of transport we are keeping vital links open – repatriating customers and ensuring key supplies like medicines and food are flown in. Our teams are doing an amazing job.”

The airline is known to have already made changes on board to reduce contact as much as possible, including temporary changes to catering, where passengers will be offered pre-prepared refreshments, and removing the hot towel service.

BA also provides regular updates to crew on best practise so they can take necessary precautions, and additional measures have been introduced to support staff.

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