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Fire: While Scotland improves its pension offer, Westminster carry on pension dispute guaranteeing strike action

Written by RSS Poster Fire Brigades Union

In the last few hours Scottish government has informed the Fire Brigades Union that it will further improve its pension proposals allowing firefighters to retire from age 55 with a much more acceptable pension reduction.

Firefighters in Scotland are not involved in strike action this weekend due to an earlier improved proposal that had already guaranteed firefighters would not be sacked for simply getting older as is the threat in England.

Scottish firefighters have also previously been offered more protection than their colleagues in England and this latest move significantly improves on the flexible retirement proposals.

The Welsh government are considering a similar option for early retirement options following extensive discussions with the FBU and now the Scottish government have formally tabled this improvement.

Although this proposal is within the rigid cost restrictions set by the Treasury, Penny Mordaunt, the Westminster fire...

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Fire: All members circular: Industrial action hardship donations

Written by RSS Poster Fire Brigades Union

Dear Brother/Sister,

As you are aware, from 18.00 hours tonight all members, except Control staff, in England will take 96 hours of strike action in order to fight for a fair pension.

Due to a variety of reasons members in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales have not been called to take part in this period of strike.  Control members are also excluded from the strike action over the next 4 days.

The Executive Council is appealing to all members who are not being called to take strike action to support those who are, by making a financial contribution of £5 per week to the hardship fund.

Donations can be made by making payments to:

Sort code 08-60-01     Account number 20034726

Solidarity is our strongest weapon in our struggle to achieve a fair pension for all and I am sure those not taking strike action will express their solidarity by not only making financial contributions, but also standing shoulder to shoulder on picket lines.

Thank you for your support.

Yours fraternally,

General Secretary

The post All members circular: Industrial action hardship donations appeared first on Fire Brigades Union.

Fire: Everton's Ross Barkley Backs Bonfire Campaign

Written by RSS Poster Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service - Latest News
Everton midfielder Ross Barkley has backed a campaign urging people to stay safe this Bonfire night.

Fire: “Snouts in the trough”: Firefighters condemn hypocrisy of ministers over pensions

Written by RSS Poster Fire Brigades Union

Firefighters today responded to claims from government ministers that the pension proposals for firefighters are generous by reminding them that firefighters pay proportionally more than ministers for a pension.

It is also worth noting that a firefighter’s pension also grows far slower than that of government ministers and that the taxpayer contribution to government ministers’ pensions is significantly more generous than that of firefighters.

Firefighters across England will strike for four days from 6pm on Friday in a long running and bitter dispute about changes to pensions. The Fire Brigades Union argues that the proposals will leave many firefighters at risk of dismissal as their fitness declines as they age into their 50s.

Matt Wrack, FBU general secretary, said: “We have a government of millionaires who are wrecking the pensions of firefighters and other public sector workers while the real scandal is that their own pensions are by far the...

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Written by RSS Poster Fire Brigades Union

Dear Brother/Sister,

The Fire Minister Penny Mordaunt has written another open letter (28 October) to firefighters. The letter contains a number of misleading and faulty statements. We have therefore provided detailed answers to all points the minister has raised.

PM: I have this morning issued a Written Ministerial Statement to update the House of Commons on the pension reforms and laid the pension regulations in Parliament. I have been clear all along that my goal is to deliver the best deal possible for firefighters. As a new, incoming Fire Minister I have wanted to satisfy myself that the reformed pension scheme is both fair and sustainable and to have worked through your concerns myself. Pensions are complex, and the issues that have been raised by all parties have been considered methodically. Until recently it has not proved possible to give a final outline of the pension scheme, I can now set these out for you.

FBU: The minister has written previously to firefighters...

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Fire: Bonfire event celebrates 10th birthday

Written by RSS Poster Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue
The Walker Park Bonfire event is celebrating it's 10th birthday in style on Wednesday along with two very special guests. The well established event, which is expecting 10,000 people to attend, has grown from strength to strength. It is supported by local schools, the local community as well as local organisations. This year's event will be a special night for two local school children too; Lily Edwards and Ebony Paterson, both aged 10 and from Walker. They have won a competition to design a poster to advertise the family event. Lily said: "I found out about it at Art Club at School and produced it with my friend Ebony. We each had ideas and put them together." When asked how she felt about winning Lily said: "I'm really excited. I love art and I think the event is excellent."Meanwhile Lily's mum, Sarah Edwards, knew nothing about the competition until Lily told her she'd won. She said: "I think it's great, she has been interested in art even since she was a toddler." The poster competition was run...

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Fire: Oxfordshire fire control proposals slammed

Written by RSS Poster Fire Brigades Union

Reacting to proposals to axe Oxfordshire fire control and move services to a combined Thames Valley control room Sharon Riley, FBU executive council member for Control, said: “These proposals are ill thought out and an insult to the professionalism of our members working in Oxfordshire Fire Control.

“Only earlier this month members proved their worth when dealing with challenging circumstances arising out of the Didcot power station fire.

“Fire crews know the value of having fully trained local control room operators as part of the team response.

“It is critical that crews and equipment are sent to the correct rendezvous points from the correct stations and that the required information is passed on to them.

“Since the abandonment of the regional control model in 2010 there has been no investment in control rooms – only cash thrown at brigades for “collaboration projects” which have not been properly risk assessed.

“The reduction in the number of control rooms and the professionals working within...

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Fire: Take extra care during industrial action by the Fire Brigades Union

Written by RSS Poster Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue
Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service (TWFRS) is encouraging residents and businesses to take extra care to protect themselves from the risks of fire ahead of the latest strike by the Fire Brigades Union (FBU). The strike will take place from 18:00 hours on Friday 31 October until 18:00 hours on Tuesday 4 November. The industrial action is due to an ongoing dispute between the FBU and national Government over pensions. Assistant Chief Fire Officer ACO Chris Lowther, Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service, said: “We are encouraging everyone to take extra care during the latest period of industrial action. "People can help keep themselves and their property safe by ensuring they have working smoke alarms on every level of their property. They give you early warning of a fire and can mean the difference between life and death, providing you with extra time to get out safely, especially at night. Residents should also have an escape plan, in the event of a fire, and ensure...

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Fire: Bonfire revellers asked to put safety first and go to an organised event this weekend

Written by RSS Poster News

GREATER Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) is urging people to go to an organised bonfire event rather than hold their own during a four-day firefighter strike which starts this weekend. 

Firefighters across England are taking industrial action from 6pm on Friday, October 31, to 6pm on Tuesday, November 4.

The dispute is between the Fire Brigades Union and the Government.

Head of Prevention at GMFRS, Area Manager Wayne Shields, said: “We will have enough fire engines available to keep our communities safe during industrial action, but this is our busiest time of year.

“The strike falls over the weekend before Bonfire Night and we expect lots of people across Greater Manchester will be planning to celebrate at home.

“If you’re planning to have a bonfire or a fireworks display at home please think about either postponing it until Bonfire Night or better still go to an organised event.

“There is an interactive map showing where bonfires and firework...

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Fire: Latest firefighters’ strike averted in Wales – possibility of pension breakthrough means no strike action called for Welsh Firefighters

Written by RSS Poster Fire Brigades Union

The fire strike called for the coming weekend in England has been averted in Wales as a result of a significant change of direction by the Welsh government. While the Westminster government continue to ignore the concerns raised by firefighters, the Welsh government have now suggested an improved proposal that could significantly improve the position for a large number of firefighters in Wales. This would involve altering the way firefighters could choose to retire before the age of 60.

This is a breakthrough in the long running pensions dispute and indicates that the Welsh government have taken into account a number of technical arguments which firefighters have raised during negotiations.

In recognition of this firefighters in Wales will not be called to join their colleagues in England in taking strike action for four continuous days from 18:00, Friday 31 October.

The Welsh government...

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