Strikes ‘inevitable’ at Aberdeen and Glasgow airports as dispute escalates

Unite has repeated calls for AGS, the company that owns the two airports, to intervene over the stalemate on worker pay.

Strike action at Aberdeen and Glasgow airports is “inevitable” after workers overwhelmingly voted to walk out in a pay dispute, a union has said.

Unite confirmed the outcome of the ballot on Tuesday with strike action supported by 98.5% of around 200 ICTS (UK) Limited workers at Glasgow and a further 100 or so at Aberdeen airport, for a total of 89.7% in favour of strike action.

Unite confirmed that the ICTS Central Search employees, who deal with passengers directly in the security search areas and process them for flights, could start action in mid-July unless ICTS significantly moves on pay in the coming days.

Around 100 staff at Aberdeen Airport were balloted for industrial action (Alamy/PA)PA Media

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Unite’s members employed by ICTS at Aberdeen and Glasgow airports will not tolerate low pay.

“ICTS is a very profitable company, yet it is refusing to make our members a fair pay offer. Unite will back our ICTS members every step of the way in their fight for better jobs, pay and conditions.”

Unite’s lead industrial officer for aviation in Scotland Pat McIlvogue said ICTS had chosen to take the dispute to the point of strike action “rather than act in a responsible way by negotiating a fair pay offer with Unite”.

“Strike action is now inevitable because 300 ICTS workers at Aberdeen and Glasgow airports have been left with no choice but to fight for what they deserve,” he said.

Unite boss Sharon Graham claimed ICTS can ‘easily afford’ a better pay deal (PA) PA Media

Mr McIlvogue called on AGS, the owner of Aberdeen and Glasgow airports, to intervene in a final attempt to get ICTS to step back from the brink of causing widespread travel disruption.

He added: “Without these workers, the airports simply can’t operate.”

ICTS central search workers at the two Scottish airports have already rejected a basic pay increase of 4%, backdated to January 2024 and a £500 one-off payment.

A spokesperson for AGS Airports said: “AGS does not involve itself in discussions between third parties, however, we are ensuring that ongoing dialogue between ICTS and Unite can continue with a view to reaching a positive outcome.”

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