BALPA News: BALPA Response to Travel Regulations
Responding to the latest travel changes, BALPA General Secretary Martin Chalk said:
“BALPA supports the Government’s desire to protect the population through effective and data-led measures. Current WHO advice includes: “Blanket travel bans will not prevent the international spread, and they place a heavy burden on lives and livelihoods. In addition, they can adversely impact global health efforts during a pandemic by disincentivizing countries to report and share epidemiological and sequencing data.”
“Travel rules have been tightened twice in less than a week. The new costs and stress of travel seem designed to destroy confidence in air travel and the idea of families being confident in booking to re-unite over the holidays, many for the first time since Covid, is now a cruel joke.
“The principle of supporting loss-making industries whilst government restrictions prevent business as usual, applies as much now as it ever did. The government’s actions and restrictions are risking our jobs, our livelihoods and our industry.
“BALPA wrote only 48 hours ago to urge the government to fund all mandatory tests for travellers and not leave it to ‘cowboy’ private testing companies. The cost to Treasury would be negligible. The expensive, inconsistent and poor reputation of private testing providers has long been an inhibiting – and at times entirely prohibitive – factor for travellers. Instead, the Government has doubled down on cost and uncertainty.
“The Omicron and Government induced uncertainty also demands a winter resilience fund for aviation. Vital aviation industry skills, including those of pilots, will carry the ambitions of the whole country as we recover. Government must invest both cash and coherent support in the recovery now”.
Notes to editors:
World Health Organisation Advice published 30 November 2021 states:
“Blanket travel bans will not prevent the international spread, and they place a heavy burden on lives and livelihoods. In addition, they can adversely impact global health efforts during a pandemic by disincentivizing countries to report and share epidemiological and sequencing data. All countries should ensure that the measures are regularly reviewed and updated when new evidence becomes available on the epidemiological and clinical characteristics of Omicron or any other VOC.”