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Union 'disappointed' by Flybe plan to cut 300 jobs

By GRichardson  |  Posted: January 24, 2013

Jim French, Flybe’s chairman and chief executive

Jim French, Flybe’s chairman and chief executive

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Union leaders have expressed disappointment at Flybe's plans to cut 300 jobs nationwide, including around 95 in Exeter.

Those at risk of losing their jobs include aircraft engineers, head office staff and managers.

The union representing aircraft engineers has called for urgent meetings with bosses to discuss the redundancies, announced as part of a turnaround plan aimed at returning the Exeter-based airline to profitability.

Prospect negotiator John Stevenson said: "Our members are extremely disappointed. While we acknowledge that the UK's continuing economic weakness is having a negative impact on business, we have yet to be convinced that the combination of job losses and the outsourcing of line maintenance put forward provides the answer.

"We are seeking urgent meetings with Flybe's management to ask them to make the case for its proposals or risk losing the confidence of staff in the direction management is looking to go.

"We will also be seeking clarification on measures to support staff, including our 96 members currently at risk."

Flybe chairman and chief executive Jim French said yesterday consultation with employees and union representatives was just beginning, but stressed the cost-cutting measures proposed were necessary to secure the long-term future of the company.

He admitted having "mixed emotions" about having to announce large scale redundancies for the first time in 30 years, but added: "Quite simply we have a responsibility to staff and to shareholders to make sure this business survives and goes forward."

Read more from Exeter Express and Echo

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