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Pilots boycott gov ID cards

Security claims don't fly

Airline pilots have warned the government that they will not take part in their security theatre trial of ID cards at Manchester and City of London airports.

The Home Office wants to trial the cards for airside workers at the two airports. Several UK airlines have already pointed out the dumbness of the dumb idea.

The British Airline Pilots' Association (BALPA) has now written to management at both airports to inform them that pilots would not carry the cards.

Balpa said the cards would add nothing to security and that promises from the Home Office that carrying the cards would be voluntary had already been broken.

It said: "Promises that ID cards would be voluntary have been broken... The Association says that forcing pilots to have ID cards is an affront to the people who for years have been, and continue to be at the forefront in the battle against terrorist outrages."

Balpa asked what would happen when the first staff member was sacked for not carrying an ID card. The group has also written to the government to warn of the difficulties that will ensue when pilots who refuse to register for the ID card lose their jobs.

A spokeswoman for the Identity and Passport Service said: "Identity cards will be mandatory for all airside workers, just as other pre-employment checks are today, so that the benefits from the Scheme can be realised across the aviation sector.

"We will work with each airport to agree exactly which employees would initially be subject to this requirement and how it would best be integrated into the pre-employment checking and pass issuing arrangements at that airport.” ®

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