Belfast Airport strike suspended within hours

 

Strike action by security staff at the North's main airport was suspended within hours of its start today following an offer of fresh negotiations.

Some 114 security staff at Belfast International Airport returned to their posts after four hours, pending the talks over pay.

The airport management said it had introduced "contingency plans" to counter the action by the staff over their row with the company which provides security at the airport, and that passengers had not been affected or security compromised.

The action began at 4 a.m. after members of the Amalgamated Transport and General Workers Union had given notice of "discretionary stoppages" over the next 10 days by security staff at the airport.

A picket line was set up at the airport gates and all airport staff urged not to enter.

Almost immediately the security sub-contractor - International Consultants of Targeted Security - offered negotiations, which are due to be held under the auspices of the Labour Relations Agency.

The strike action has been backed by the vast majority of security staff, who claim they are on "second rate wages" with staff earning less than half that of their counterparts in England.

PA