There may be disruption to the island’s ferry link if industrial action goes ahead, as voted for by RMT members who work for Caledonian MacBrayne.
Members voted, with 92 per cent in favour of strike action and 98 per cent for action short of a strike on a 60 per cent turnout over job security, pensions and working conditions.
The union said that its relationship with CalMac on the Clyde and Hebrides network has deteriorated in recent months to such an extent that maritime union RMT has had no choice a formal dispute with the company, following the failure to provide RMT with satisfactory reassurances over job security, conditions of service, pensions and continuity of lifeline ferry services for remote communities and businesses and to move to a ballot.
RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: “The failure to give our members the most basic assurances meant that RMT had no alternative but to ballot CalMac members for strike action and industrial action short of strike action, in order to secure our members’ rights during this period of increasing uncertainty and insecurity.
“That ballot has now concluded and members have delivered a massive and solid mandate for action.
“RMT remains available for serious and constructive talks aimed at resolving this dispute.”