MP Calls for Urgent Meeting on HIAL Remote Towers Project

Na h-Eileanan an Iar SNP MP Angus MacNeil has called for an urgent meeting between the Scottish Government, HIAL, unions, local councils and the Civil Aviation Authority to discuss the controversial remote towers project.

Angus MacNeil called for the meeting after criticising the Scottish Government’s refusal to engage on the topic.

Highland and Islands Airports Limited (HIAL) is a public corporation wholly owned by the Scottish Ministers.

Control tower and apron, Benbecula Airport by David Martin

The Prospect trade union has been warning that railroading through the project despite the impact on local communities risks undermining the ability of the Islands Act to protect island jobs in the future.

Prospect negotiator David Avery said:

“The Scottish Government must end their stubborn refusal to engage with legitimate criticism and evidence about the impact of HIAL’s centralisation plans on island communities.

“Local politicians, communities, customers and even HIAL’s own staff are opposed to this expensive and unnecessary project that will remove good jobs from communities that desperately need them.

“HIAL’s remote towers plans are exposing the lack of protection that the Islands Act offers to employment in the Islands and risks setting a dangerous precedent which makes us concerned for our members working in a range of public bodies embedded across the Western and Northern Isles.”

“It is time for the Scottish government to listen seriously to the other side of the argument and attend this meeting organised by Angus MacNeil MP.”

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