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This airline wants executives to work as baggage handlers amid staff shortage

The COVID-19 crisis and acute labour shortage has created an unprecedented situation for airlines.

August 16, 2022 / 01:01 PM IST
Airlines across the globe have been left struggling because of the coronavirus crisis. 
(Representational image)

Airlines across the globe have been left struggling because of the coronavirus crisis. (Representational image)

Australia's flag carrier Qantas Airways, struggling with a shortage of workers, has called on its executives and managers to get to the ground and help handle baggage for three months.

The airline told its executives in a memo that it was involved in emergency planning because of "the impacts of a record flu season and ongoing COVID cases coupled with the tightest labour market in decades", website reported.

It asked at least 100 mangers and executives to choose support roles at the airports in Melbourne and Sydney.

Their responsibilities will involve scanning bags before they are loaded on planes, doing checks while loading them onto belts, transferring them to planes and offloading them on arrival.

Executives and managers at Qantas Airways have been asked to serve as baggage handlers three or five days of work per week, in shifts lasting four or six hours, according to


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“You will be fully trained to safely carry out the functions you are supporting,” the airline's chief operating officer Colin Hughes said in the staff memo.  "You’ll receive a roster, be scheduled to operate and be supervised and managed in the live operation by our ground handling partners.”

However, he said there was no expectation that executives will agree to  ground staff duties in addition to their  full-time responsibilities, the BBC reported.

Qantas Airways told the BBC they have had office staff pitch in at airports earlier too.

"Around 200 head office staff have helped at airports during peak travel periods since Easter," a spokesperson for the airline said.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Aug 16, 2022 12:57 pm
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