Pilot Fatigue

Fatigue has for many years been a worrying issue for pilots and it continues to be a huge concern across the industry today. Pilots have told BALPA they believe fatigue is now the biggest single threat to flight safety.

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Pilot licensing

The new and unfair post-Brexit licencing system means UK pilot licences have been seriously degraded in value and utility. The new state of play has actively prevented UK pilots, including those made redundant due to Covid-19, from securing UK jobs.

BALPA continues to campaign for a reciprocal Flight Crew and Engineer Licence agreement between the UK and EU, which would benefit all UK airlines. This would address the imbalance following Brexit and the Government must address it urgently.

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Pilots feel the current pension system - including the existing tax relief framework - works. They want stability and fear any changes could undermine the system and put people off saving for their future.

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Pilot Mental Health

In the awake of the Germanwings tragedy there has been huge media interest in the topic of pilot health. It’s a topic BALPA takes seriously and is working to address. BALPA understands the need to ensure those suffering mental health issues, who are in safety critical jobs, must be identified, given support and monitored to ensure they do not pose a safety risk.

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Environment and Sustainability

BALPA wants to see a thriving future for the aviation sector in the UK, one that provides jobs for our members and mobility for our population. Yet we are in the midst of a climate crisis and have a moral and legal obligation to ensure our future is a sustainable one. BALPA's Interim Environment Position Paper (February 2022) sets out our key recommendations and goals ahead of the publication of the UK Government's Jet Zero Strategy, due in Summer 2022. 

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For many becoming a pilot is a dream harboured from a young age. It’s a calling, and the British Airline Pilots’ Association’s aim is to ensure it remains a great profession and one that anyone can aspire to. But becoming a pilot takes real determination and there are some huge challenges that aspiring pilots need to be aware of. BALPA has set up the nextGen programme to help protect the profession by reaching down to these new entrants and giving them a voice. 

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Aviation Recovery Plan

BALPA's plan for aviation recovery post-Covid, presented to the Aviation Minister Robert Courts on 25 January to support policy making

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Cabin Air Quality

On most commercial aircraft the cabin air is supplied by the compressor stage of the aircraft jet engines or auxiliary power unit. Compression of the air leads to the air being heated and under abnormal conditions, such as failure of an oil seal, any oils or greases this air comes into contact with will be heated and the contaminants arising may mix with the cabin air. Cabin air quality events do occur and occupants can experience irritant effects due to the nature of these contaminants

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Tax relief on self-funded training

BALPA is concerned that pilots are not getting the tax relief on self-funded training that we believe they are entitled to. We are campaigning for these rules to be changed. We are working with the Government, HMRC, the TUC and other professional bodies and are call for a fair system that ensures pilots, who are required by their employer to pay for vital training, can claim tax relief in a similar way an airline would if it were to fund the training.

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