Somerset firefighters to strike over pension dispute

Somerset firefighters to strike over pension dispute

Somerset firefighters to strike over pension dispute

First published in News Somerset County Gazette: Photograph of the Author by

PEOPLE are being advised to take extra care as firefighters across Somerset strike this weekend.

Firefighters will take part in further industrial action over pensions on Friday (May 2), Saturday and Sunday.

Matt Wrack, from the Fire Brigades Union (FBU), said: “After three years of negotiations and an intense four months presenting an indisputable, evidence-based case for the need to ensure a pension scheme that takes into account the unique occupation of firefighting, the Government is still burying its head in the sand.

“Several members of Government were only too keen to praise firefighters during the winter floods, but their words amount to nothing when they simultaneously ignore issues that threaten the future of firefighters and their families.

“Nevertheless, we remain totally committed to resolving the dispute through negotiation, and are ready to meet to consider a workable proposal as soon as possible.”

Firefighters will strike between noon and 5pm on Friday, 2pm and 2am on Saturday and 10am and 3pm on Sunday.

FBU members are unhappy at plans to force them to work an extra five years until 60 and to increase their pension contributions, claiming many could lose their jobs as they would be unable to reach the required fitness levels.

Following the last meeting of the union's executive council earlier this month, the union wrote to Minister Brandon Lewis saying that if they had not received any proposals by April 24, they would assume the Government was unwilling or unable to offer any improvement.

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service will respond to 999 calls during the strike but is asking members of the public to take extra care.

Comments (4)

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4:32pm Tue 29 Apr 14

Mi_Coc says...

Emergency service staff should not be working to 60 plus!
Emergency service staff should not be working to 60 plus! Mi_Coc
  • Score: -4

12:08am Wed 30 Apr 14

GreatOdin'sRaven says...

"Take extra care" - as if people are going around setting fire to their houses and stuff on purpose the rest of the time!
"Take extra care" - as if people are going around setting fire to their houses and stuff on purpose the rest of the time! GreatOdin'sRaven
  • Score: 6

4:35pm Fri 2 May 14

Guy Smiley says...

How's about the "old" fire-fighters with at least 30 years to live at current rates spend their 10-years from 55 to 65 (or longer like most of us) doing fire safety work, training, inspections, hydrant checks, smoke alarm installation and plant maintenance/testing.


You could have two tiers of active fire-"fighters" aged below 55 and a group of fire-"preventers" acting more to prevent fires than fight them when they occur.

Or is this strike just about wanting to retire at 55 so you can continue you roofing/home-improve
ment/security business on the side?
How's about the "old" fire-fighters with at least 30 years to live at current rates spend their 10-years from 55 to 65 (or longer like most of us) doing fire safety work, training, inspections, hydrant checks, smoke alarm installation and plant maintenance/testing. You could have two tiers of active fire-"fighters" aged below 55 and a group of fire-"preventers" acting more to prevent fires than fight them when they occur. Or is this strike just about wanting to retire at 55 so you can continue you roofing/home-improve ment/security business on the side? Guy Smiley
  • Score: 4

1:19pm Sat 3 May 14

SocialistParty_SomersetBranch says...

The Somerset branch of the Socialist Party continues to offer full and unequivocal support to Devon and Somerset FBU members, in your struggle to defend vital public services; pensions and other conditions of service.

AN INJURY TO ONE, IS AN INJURY TO ALL!

FIGHT ALL AUSTERITY - NO TO ALL CUTS!

VICTORY TO THE FIREFIGHTERS!




www.shopstewards.net


www.socialistparty.o
rg.uk
The Somerset branch of the Socialist Party continues to offer full and unequivocal support to Devon and Somerset FBU members, in your struggle to defend vital public services; pensions and other conditions of service. AN INJURY TO ONE, IS AN INJURY TO ALL! FIGHT ALL AUSTERITY - NO TO ALL CUTS! VICTORY TO THE FIREFIGHTERS! www.shopstewards.net www.socialistparty.o rg.uk SocialistParty_SomersetBranch
  • Score: 0

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