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CalMac Conspiracy with SNP Government

20 September 2016

Responding to the Daily Record's publication of a leaked document revealing CalMac and Scottish Ministers have knowingly conspired to shaft ferry workers, TSSA General Secretary Manuel Cortes said:

 "It is a national scandal to discover CalMac have been in complete collusion with the Scottish Government to betray ferry workers, passengers and unions who stood shoulder to shoulder with CalMac in the fight against privatisation.

 "You don't have to decipher this document at all. It's quite clear that under pressure from Scottish Ministers CalMac hands are being forced into not coming good on the pay deal, on job retention or on the bonus.


 "And it's clear too that both Ministers and CalMac knew if their plans got out, they would provoke widespread anger and it would be seen as their fingers pulling the trigger on industrial action.


"Such high level Government interference in union negotiated pay deals is the sort of immoral industrial relations from the Margaret Thatcher handbook and has no place in Scotland. I say shame on Nicola Sturgeon for presiding over an SNP that will stoop that low.


"Sturgeon and her Transport Minister, Humza Yousaf both have very serious questions to answer on their role in knowingly provoking a dispute with ferry workers.


"And frankly heads must roll at CalMac too for mushroom management of the worst sort. They have tried to keep workers and their union reps in the dark and feed them s***. We're having none of it!


"This scandal goes right to the top of CalMac and right to the top of the Scottish government. Our members won't be just furious when they find out, they will be utterly betrayed. It's to protect hardworking staff from vindictive behaviour like this that unions remain as necessary as ever.


"And we will now consult with our members and fellow unions to discuss our strategy in the wake of the Daily Record's revelations.


"But the first step in restoring any good faith must be taken by CalMac immediately with a no-strings pay deal and a concrete promise to protect jobs and restore the bonus scheme.


"We will also be demanding answers to these questions: Which Scottish Ministers were at the table with CalMac deciding workers could be shafted? Who commissioned the media relations strategy that advises keeping pay negotiations as far away from contract signing because it would provoke a strike ballot? Just when did CalMac decide on this strategy?


"We will also be seeking publication of  the minutes of the meetings. This story is a long way from over yet. And I pay tribute to The Daily Record for exposing this scandal."

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