David Cameron 'absolutely right' to take hard line on BAA strikers

David Cameron's robust response to Unite's threatened bank holiday BAA strike action has been backed by public affairs experts.

Heathrow: Strikes would cause 'total shutdown'
Heathrow: Strikes would cause 'total shutdown'
Unite has said that security guard and ground staff have backed industrial action by a margin of three to one in a move that could force ‘total shutdown’ of BAA’s Heathrow, Stansted, Southampton, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Edinburgh airports.

The Prime Minister responded that ‘these sorts of strikes never achieve anything apart from damage – damage to business, damage to jobs, damage to the interests of tourists who want to come to visit Britain, or people who want to leave Britain and have a holiday overseas'.

He also stated: ‘We want to demonstrate that Britain is open for business.'

Portland PR partner George Pascoe-Watson said that Cameron was ‘absolutely right to say what he believes’.

‘It is also what the country wants to hear. No Prime Minister can support strikes. They are damaging to every aspect of this country's recovery.’

There has been speculation for some time that Cameron is looking to introduce legislation that would reduce the power of the unions and the likelihood of industrial action.

Visiting professor in public relations at the University of Westminster Trevor Morris added: ‘The public don’t have any natural affection for these kind of workers. Given that I think generally people in this country are expecting we’re going to have to tighten our belts, I suspect that the bulk of people who voted Conservative will support what he said. I wouldn’t have thought it would do him damage.’

However, Morris said: ‘There’s a slight danger that he communicates over everything.’

Cicero Consulting director and chief corporate counsel Iain Anderson said: 'The Cameron line "open for business" resonates with his recent foreign trips. This is certainly becoming the 'line to take' for much communication from No10.'

Ogilvy public relations senior director Ross Cathcart said of Unite’s move to strike over the bank holiday weekend: ‘It's classic brinkmanship. A bank holiday is a travel boss's soft underbelly. Hopefully common sense will prevail.’

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