12 June 2021
RMT Press Office:
CALMAC Union RMT has written to the Transport Minister, Graeme Dey MSP calling for a ferries summit with the recognised trade unions, following the decision to charter the Pentalina catamaran from union-busting firm Pentland Ferries for work on CalMac’s Clyde and Hebrides routes.
RMT General Secretary, Mick Lynch said:
“RMT members at CalMac are on the front line dealing with the service disruption and passenger frustration at the current problems with the fleet, indeed many of my members live in the island communities they serve.
“We acknowledge the need for additional tonnage in order to increase the resilience and capacity of the CalMac fleet but we cannot accept the ongoing vessel procurement crisis being used to justify an attack on CalMac pay, conditions and standards through the Scottish government utilising the services of a union busting company.
“It looks increasingly as though the Scottish Government prioritises the financial fortunes of an anti-union employer over the interests of loyal and hard working CalMac staff who have battled to keep services running during the pandemic on an ageing fleet.
“Not so long ago, Pentland Ferries took the Scottish Government to court over perceived unfairness in subsidised lifeline ferry services. Now they are invited onto a publicly owned and operated contract without any consultation with the trade unions organising CalMac staff.
“We demand that with this decision to utilise Pentland Ferries must come with a commitment to recognise trade unions.”