FRENCH-born SNP MEP Christian Allard has called on EU nationals living in Shetland to “send Boris Johnson a message” over Brexit at this month’s by-election.

Allard, who was elected as an MEP in May, is on the campaign trail with SNP candidate Tom Wills in Shetland this weekend. Allard has said that freedom of movement is “essential” to the future prosperity of public services in Scotland and has called on voters to make clear that’s a Shetland says no to Brexit.

He said: “Sadly, EU nationals have been used as a bargaining chip by the Tories from the very start of this Brexit process. Boris Johnson and his band of hard-right Brexiteers are determined to drag Scotland out of the EU regardless of the consequences to our economy – ending freedom of movement in the process. EU nationals living in Shetland should use this by-election to send Boris Johnson a message.

Shetland’s NHS and care sector would simply cease to function without EU nationals.

“Businesses in the fishing, farming and hospitality sectors would also struggle to stay afloat. The movement of people is essential to Scotland’s future prosperity. Shetland’s future lies in Europe. A vote for Tom Wills and the SNP on August 29 is a vote to make clear that Shetland says no to Brexit.”

The by-election follows the resignation of LibDem MSP Tavish Scott. Other candidates are Johan Adamson, Scottish Labour; Brydon Goodlad, Scottish Conservative and Unionist; Stuart Martin, Ukip; Debra Nicolson, Scottish Green Party; Ian Scott, Independent; Michael Stout, Independent; Peter Tait, Independent; Ryan Thomson, Independent; and Beatrice Wishart, Scottish Liberal Democrats.