Strike action will impact Stornoway and Benbecula airports

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Air traffic controllers working for Highlands and Islands Airport Limited (Hial) have voted in favour of taking strike action.

In a ballot, 88% of controllers voted for strikes.

Stornoway and Benbecula airports, as well as Dundee, Inverness, Kirkwall, Sumburgh and Wick John O’Groats will be impacted.

The strikes are likely to begin in April and continue during the summer.

HIAL managing director Inglis Lyon, said: “We are disappointed Air Traffic Control (ATC) colleagues have chosen to take industrial action that is likely to have a significant impact on passengers and the communities we serve in the Highlands and Islands.

“The Prospect union has sought a double-digit pay award. As a government sponsored agency, HIAL must follow the Scottish Government pay policy. We cannot implement pay awards more than that directed by government.

“HIAL made a pay award offer to all staff which was accepted following an overall ballot of trade union members and paid to all staff at the end of September 2018.

“This was backdated to 1 April 2018 and saw colleagues receive increases of up to three per cent in line with Scottish Government Pay Remit Guidelines.

“Prospect ATC members rejected the pay settlement, but nonetheless received the increase.

“We are open to holding further talks with Prospect on a recruitment and retention allowance for Air Traffic Control staff that would further bolster an attractive remuneration package that already includes excellent pension benefits and holiday entitlements.”