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Qantas, Jetstar slashed: Most staff stood down

Qantas is standing down most of its staff, suspending all international flights and 60 per cent of domestic services.

Click PLAY to hear Heidi Murphy break the news with Neil Mitchell on 3AW

The flying of kangaroo will be grounded from the end of March.

In an announcement to the stock exchange, Qantas declared all of its international flights and Jetstar flights will be suspended from the end of this month.

They had already announced that 90 per cent of their flights would be cut. There’s also a 60 percent reduction to domestic flights.

That means two-thirds of their 30,000 strong workforce will be temporarily stood down.

Those staff will be able to access leave and other arrangements to ensure they are continued to be paid something in the interim, however full details are yet to be made clear.

“This is a hard note to send,” Qantas boss Alan Joyce started an email to staff this morning.

“We’re in a good financial position right now, but our annual wages bill is $4.3 billion.

“With the huge drop in revenue we’re facing, we have to make difficult decisions to guarantee the future of the national carrier.

The Qantas board and management committee, including Mr Joyce, will take no salary for at least the next three months.

The shareholder dividend due to be paid in April has been deferred until September.

Some option being offered to staff included:

    • take up to four weeks’ annual leave in advance of accruing it (for those with low leave balances)
    • staggering your annual leave to spread out the payment of leave
    • access long service leave early (if eligible).

If you are stood down you can:

    • access your accrued annual and long service leave immediately
    • seek alternative employment and still retain your job with us
    • access unemployment benefits while still retaining your job.

Image: Getty/Bloomberg

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