Union's call for Government to protect aviation jobs as Newcastle Airport prepares to resume flights

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Unite the Union has warned that Newcastle Airport’s success is ‘vital’ to the North East economy as flights prepare to restart next week.

New research, commissioned by the union, has revealed that securing the future of Newcastle Airport is crucial to the wellbeing of the regional economy.

It was announced on Thursday, May 28 that some flights out of the airport will resume on Monday, June 1 with more destinations expected to follow in the weeks after.

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The site supports around 19,000 full-time jobs – and Unite is warning that some of these jobs could be swept away without urgent action from the Government.

Some flights from Newcastle Airport will resume on June 1.Some flights from Newcastle Airport will resume on June 1.
Some flights from Newcastle Airport will resume on June 1.

Around 3,900 of these jobs are directly linked to the airport’s operations.

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Unite regional officer Brian Cole said: "Airports are hives of economic activity. Newcastle airport pumps £1.6billion into the North East economy, supporting the jobs and livelihoods of thousands of workers, from air crew to taxi drivers to shop staff.

“If these jobs go then a huge economic hole will open up in the Newcastle area and it could take decades to recover.

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“Overnight, airports were effectively shut down by the Government to protect the public's health, but we are now pleading with Government to protect our area's long-term economic security.

“We are not asking for a giveaway, but for loans that will be repaid when the sector is back on its feet, and we have support for this from across the political spectrum.

“But the clock is ticking. It is more than two months since the chancellor promised that a support package would be forthcoming for aviation, however he has yet to deliver.

“The communities that rely on Newcastle Airport for jobs and their prosperity cannot wait much longer.”

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Unite has further produced a blueprint of how it thinks the Government should intervene across the entire aviation sector to protect jobs and conditions of workers.

The union is also calling on everyone whose work is connected to the airport, or who is concerned about its future, to email their MP and call for support for the airport and the UK’s entire aviation sector.

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