Strikes announced at 11 Scottish airports in February amid pay dispute

Strikes will take place on February 17 and 20 at Dundee Airport, and ten others will be affected on the February 21, 22 and 23.

Strikes announced at Highlands and Islands airports in February amid pay dispute iStock

Strike action has been announced at 11 Scottish airports throughout February amid a dispute over pay.

Unite has set new dates for industrial action at Highlands and Islands Airports Ltd (HIAL), which will include security staff, baggage handlers, ground crew and firefighters at the airports.

Three of HIAL’s airports were closed in December during previous strike days, as union members rejected the 5% pay rise they were offered by management.

Strikes will take place on February 17 and 20 at Dundee Airport, and six other airports will be closed due to strikes on February 21, 22 and 23.

These are:

  • Barra
  • Benbecula
  • Kirkwall
  • Stornoway
  • Sumburgh
  • Tiree

The following airports will be operating as normal on February 21, 22 and 23:

  • Campbeltown
  • Dundee
  • Inverness
  • Islay
  • Wick John O’Groats

Inglis Lyon, HIAL’s managing director said: “We apologise in advance for the disruption this action by Unite colleagues will cause for our airlines and passengers. I would urge anyone intending to travel on these dates to contact their airline.

“The enhanced offer we presented maximised the flexibility within the Scottish Government’s pay policy.

“However, we remain in dialogue with Transport Scotland and the trade unions in an attempt to resolve the matter.”

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Inflation is at a generational high yet the HIAL group believe a substantial real-terms pay cut is what our hard-working members deserve.

“This is completely unacceptable.

“Strike action is now inevitable at all 11 airports and this is entirely the fault of airport management and the Scottish Government.

“Unite will fully support our members in the fight for better jobs, pay and conditions across the Highlands and Islands.”

Unite industrial officer Shauna Wright said: “Unite believes our hard-working members who keep the airports operating in isolated and rural communities across Scotland deserve far more than what is currently on the table.

“Unite is once again calling on the Scottish Government to meet with us, the workers and HIAL management to fund an improved pay offer, and to deliver more investment in these communities.”

A spokesman for HIAL said: “We are currently liaising closely with our local teams and airlines to determine the impact of this industrial action and the potential disruption for passengers and will post further updates and information on our website and airport social media channels.

“In the meantime, we would advise passengers who intend to travel on these days to keep in touch with their airline.”

HIAL said Wick Airport would not be involved in the latest round of strike action.

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