Crucial support is put in place for Rathlin inhabitants by Department, says O'Lynn

It is crucial proper support is put in place for inhabitants of Rathlin Island during strike action on the local ferry, Alliance North Antrim MLA Patricia O’Lynn has said.

Patricia O'Lynn Infrastructure

Dr O’Lynn was speaking after ferry sailings between Rathlin Island and Ballycastle were cancelled due to industrial action. It is believed ferry workers are striking over pay and conditions. Rathlin Island Ferry Limited operates the service on behalf of the Department for Infrastructure.

North Antrim MLA Dr O’Lynn has contacted the Department for Infrastructure and said help needs to be given to locals while the industrial action is ongoing.

“Alliance supports the right of workers to strike and I know the workers at Rathlin Ferry will not have taken the decision to do so lightly. They will be aware it is their friends and family who will be most impacted and it will have been a last resort. I hope there is a successful resolution soon,” she said.

“While this is primarily a dispute between the ferry operator and crew, the contract for services is issued by the Department of Infrastructure. The ferry is a lifeline for islanders and the vibrant community of Rathlin is reliant on that connection.

“Government needs to provide support for small and vulnerable communities, and Rathlin is one of those. I have contacted the Department to ask what urgent measures are being put in place to support residents there.

“I stand with all the islanders and want to see proper support for this crucial connection between island and mainland.”