The Australian Federation of Air Pilots (AFAP) is disappointed and saddened that the Virgin Group will proceed with making all 220 Australian Tigerair pilots redundant, effective today.
The union, representing more than 5000 commercial pilots, calls on the Federal Government to waive any tax payable on these redundancy payments.
“If no tax is applied to redundancy payments, Tigerair pilots might be able to stretch out their payments a little further in what is an incredibly desperate time for airline pilots,” said AFAP Executive Director Simon Lutton.
This proposal is on top of AFAP President Captain Louise Pole’s call for the Federal Government to waive tax payable on annual and long service leave which most Australian airline pilots are already drawing down on while being stood down without pay by their employer.
The AFAP is also concerned that employers may seek to make stood down pilots use and exhaust their paid annual and long service leave entitlements before passing on the Government’s recently announced JobKeeper payment.
This afternoon Qantas confirmed to employees that it will be using the JobKeeper payment to subsidise leave entitlements that their employees access while they are stood down.
“The aim of the new JobKeeper payment is to assist with continued wage payments to employees,” said Mr Lutton.
“It will be an absolute outrage if airlines misuse this subsidy to improve their balance sheet and do not pass it on directly to affected pilots as wage payments.”