A TRADE union has today welcomed a debate in the Scottish Parliament focused on the nation’s ailing civil aviation industry amid a "second wave" of redundancies.

Unite the Union supported the debate secured by Scottish Labour’s MSP Colin Smyth through the motion Sustainable Aviation Beyond Covid-19.

It calls on the Scottish Government to work with the aviation sector and trade unions to agree on a specific package of support for the industry.

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It says that support must include protections for jobs and working conditions.

A series of aviation companies at Scotland’s major airports including Loganair, OCS, ICTS Security, ABM and Saints Transport have recently threatened a spate of redundancy consultations as the UK Government’s Job Retention Scheme draws to a close on October 31.

Unite has warned that companies and airlines operating in and from Aberdeen Airport have various redundancy consultations underway threatening more than 100 jobs.

At Edinburgh Airport, the figure stands at more than 1000 jobs.

Glasgow Airport currently has redundancy consultations affecting more than 600 workers.

Unite has launched a campaign to "Save Scotland’s Airports" following a Fraser of Allander report conducted on behalf of Unite, which estimated 2330 direct and indirect job losses in civil aviation with an overall economic loss of around £140m to the Scottish economy after accounting for knock-on effects.

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Pat Rafferty, Unite Scottish secretary, said: “Unite representatives have been working tirelessly to stave off more redundancies by working with aviation businesses to exhaust the Job Retention Scheme.

"But we are now at the cliff-edge as the scheme will draw to a close at the end of October. It’s why there is now the beginning of a second wave of redundancies to hit the sector.

"The debate in the Scottish Parliament is welcome.

"But we need coordinated action now or we fear that the sector will take years to recover with thousands of jobs being lost in the process if measures are not swiftly enacted.”

The aviation industry has taken a severe hit since lockdown began back in March.