Public support ferry workers strike, says new poll

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A new independent poll carried out by Survation has found that almost two thirds of Scottish voters think ferry services should remain in the public sector while only one in ten support privatising the service.

The poll also found that six out of ten Scots supported the right of CalMac Workers to take industrial action to defend staffing levels, jobs and pensions, while only one in five oppose it.

The poll was released following the decision by the Scottish Government to defer to end of the month the issuing of the Invitation to Tender documents for the CalMac services following discussions with the RMT.

The union today (Tuesday) vowed to step up its campaign to keep CalMac in the public sector and do whatever was necessary to defend its member’s jobs and conditions as talks continue.

As well as strong public support, political backing for the Unions campaign continues to grow with new Parliamentary motions being tabled at Westminster, by both SNP and Labour MPs, supporting keeping Clyde and Hebrides Ferry Services in the public sector and calling for the concerns of Calmac workers to be addressed. (See below)

RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: “The fact that nearly two thirds of Scottish voters support RMT’s campaign to keep CalMac as a public service within the public sector is a massive boost for our fight to defend these lifeline ferry routes.

“The message from the general public could not be clearer and is backed up by broad political support for public ownership of CalMac. The union expects those overseeing the tendering process to take this resounding, independent polling fully into account and to secure the future of CalMac in the public sector.”