Highlands & Islands

Series of Hial air traffic control strikes planned

Dundee Airport Image copyright Google
Image caption Dundee is one of 11 regional airports operated by Hial

Air traffic controllers at Highlands and Islands airports are to vote on staging a series of one-day strikes from 1 April and through the summer.

Members of the Prospect union will be balloted from 11 February to 1 March on taking the industrial action.

The union are in a dispute over pay with their employer Highlands and Islands Airports Limited (Hial).

Hial, which operates 11 regional airports, has said it is committed to continuing "constructive discussions".

The company is owned by the Scottish government.

Last week, the government said all staff had been given a pay rise, which was a "significant improvement" on previous years.

'Further talks'

Seven airports would be affected by potential strike action. They are Benbecula, Dundee, Inverness, Kirkwall, Stornoway, Sumburgh and Wick John O'Groats.

Hial's airports Barra, Campbeltown, Islay and Tiree do not have air traffic controllers.

David Avery, Prospect negotiations officer, said the controllers did not wish to take strike action but had been "forced into this position".

Andrea Sillars, of Hial, said: "We are disappointed that Prospect have decided to ballot their members on strike action.

"We remain committed to continuing constructive discussions to help resolve the dispute and are open to holding further talks with Prospect on a recruitment and retention allowance for air traffic control staff. We await the outcome of the ballot."

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