FERRY workers will step up their campaign to nationalise services to the Orkney and Shetland islands at a rally next month.
Transport union RMT says outsourcing giant Serco has overseen a decline in performance, passenger numbers and freight movements since taking over NorthLink.
This is in spite of getting a higher subsidy than the previous operator, the union says.
RMT national secretary Steve Todd said: “Northern Isles communities deserve lower fares, more frequent sailings and improved on-board services, on properly staffed and funded vessels.
“We believe a growing and more reliable service can only be achieved through public ownership and operation.”
The union has invited speakers from all of the main Scottish political parties to address the rally.
RMT is also calling on the Scottish government to integrate inter-island services currently funded by local councils into the NorthLink service.