Fireman's Strike Latest

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Someone needs to tell them that they need to stike for 10 day so the boys can get LSSA at least.

That said.  5.56mm is much more effective at getting cats out of a tree.......
Right, let's make sure the Dinky Toys have the recruitment boards slapped on the sides...

This can be a very very nice Army PR exercise too.


Further to my post yesterday about POTL and NITAT training, those in units who think they're going to be relieved on OP FRESCO so they can have christmas leave had better think again!

As someone in the chain of command I will make sure that my soldiers will appear to have been away for 10 days to cover those 8 day stints.  Lets make sure that those units covering NI also receive NI pay!


War Hero
I heard on a grapevine that the Army Pay Review did not go so well and 1.5% is on the cards for next April.  Should this be true, I wonder when then papers compare military wages against firemans?  

Should they give the firemen a decent wage wise I personally think a 1.5% pay rise for us when we "fill the breach" is a bit of an insult.

Moan over!
A quick precis of the strike for you non fire service types out there. By the way, the correct terminology is firefighter as many of my female colleagues resent the lack of acknowledgement of their existence within the service.

We are asking for £30k (for a qualified firefighter) because that is what the governments own figures say we should be getting for the job we do.
We lodged this claim in May with our employers and have met them 6 times since then and as yet they have not said what they think we are worth.
They were going to offer us £25k as a start to negotiations in June but John Prescott's office told them to withdraw the offer before it reached the table.
The inquiry set up by the government, using the modernising agenda first proposed about 5 years ago which is continually defeated at the negotiating table by both sides, is  looking at our conditions of service  within a 3 month period (less time than it takes to train a firefighter). Pay is very low down the terms of reference. If the changes proposed are accepted even a 20% pay rise will be a pay cut due to the increased hours we will be asked to undertake, which will also lead to further cuts in our service despite the increasing workload.
No firefighter wants to go on strike but legally we have no alternative and it is the only way to force the government to accept the seriousness of our claim.

Finally, to train you people on all the equipment currently carried on board a front line appliance would take far longer than the time you are currently being trained (it takes us 4 years to qualify), the appliances are designed to manouever at speed (we take specialist courses to learn to do that), and in London they and the equipment we use are not owned by the brigade but are leased from a private company (PFI dontcha know).

Hope this has helped clarify the situation for you.

Stay well.

Most of us hear what you are saying.

That said,I'm sure that's going to set the minds of all of those soldiers fire-fighting who have to drive a vehicle which is not designed to manoeuvre at all, it would appear, at ease!

Just wait until the first GG misses the turn and creases a bus stop fully loaded with aunt Mabel and her bingo club mates!


War Hero
Why do we have to use the Green Goodess?

Surely it would make more sense to use the existing engines......oops sorry, perhaps I am aplying some logic here.


Nick Raynsford, the minister responsible for fire services, said the Army would have to rely on just 800 "Green Goddesses", some of which are 50 years old, as opposed to the 3,000 modern fire engines used by firefighters.

He said: "Modern kit is much more sophisticated and would require a longer training period. But there would be some very difficult instances at fire stations if the Army tried to take over kit when they [the strikers] were picketing fire stations. It would involve the Army in the dispute."

A few extra casualties are obviously to be preferred to crossing a picket line.
Shame on the Adj for spreading such malicious rumours about Crab stores...if only we could get extra DPs!  Sorry to disappoint guys but the std issue is all that's being taken although I believe there is a possibility of an spare pair of boots ...I guess if it can be decided who is responsible for their issue, oh and in the grand tradition - dependent on whether someone else might need them first.

I can understand the motivation for the strike, I just wonder how long public sympathy will remain with the firemen if it all goes pear shaped around bonfire night.  Not striking on Mon 5 Nov is all very well but most fireworks displays will take place on the weekend before... Good luck to all military personnel taking part.
I doubt very much there are any fireman reading this page (too busy painting banners organizing picket lines) but would just like to truly thank them for placing yet more pressure on the HM forces. Two words 'Regional Agreements', How can a fireman out in the sticks be given the same increase as a fireman in London....40% justified for some, maybe.
In reply to roger-that

The reason we are asking for our £30k across the board is that fires, car crashes, chemical spills, terrorist attacks etc. are the same whichever part of the country we live in. My colleagues outside London face the same risks as I do, albeit not as frequently, but their sacrifice commitment and dedication is just as worthy as mine. In fact 2 part-time firefighters lost their lives in a house fire at Blaina, Wales a few couple of years ago rescueing children. What price their lives?
To turn the question over to you are you in favour of regional pay for soldiers et al depending on where you serve? By all means pay regional allowances (although I know that Cornwall is as expensive as London for food etc) to compensate for costs but the basic must be the same because our job is the same.

Keep safe and well.


I agree witht the sentiments that the firefighter above posted - it is a shame it has come to this though.  Agreed 22k is too low and 30 k would be nice, but presumably you read the terms and conditions before you signed up.  I did for this job and accepted that I might be better off doing something else but was willing to make the choice.

I certainly hope a compromise can be reached before civilian and/or military lives are lost or wrecked or certain elemets of society choose to take advantage of the dispute.  Perhaps we will all be able to sleep more comfortably!
Hello flash_to_bang,

Like you I want to see an end to this dispute. Like you I volunteered to be in the job I'm in AND I LOVE IT.

BUT - I don't expect that my committment and dedication to the public I serve should be taken advantage of by the mealy-mouthed hypocrites who employ us and govern us. (This you could also apply to nurses, paramedics, the armed services).

I have reached the stage where only by defending what I have am I able to ask for more - to benefit my family and me. My employers would rather take everything that I get away - pay peanuts and get monkeys. That is not why I joined the job and should not be my reward for my sacrifices over the years and the years to come.

we are asking only what the government say we should get for what we do. They are the one's not keeping their side of the bargain, and they won't despite what their review will say in December.

Keep safe and well.


Why, if the pay is so poor, is the fire service never short of recruits??
Why do you believe you should get paid more than the police who answer far more calls and face danger throughout their shifts??
Why do you believe you should be paid more than nurses who have to train hard for many years and get pass a degree??

I'm sorry but 40% is outragious, because of the knock on effects to the rest of the public sector you will never get it, so wait for the pay review, see what they say, it may not be as bad as you think and you can nogotiate from a position where you hold the moral high ground.

It is my belief that the real reason behind this strike is that is a pre-emptive measure by the FBU, it is scared that the pay review will come up with a pay rise but a change in shift patterns and working practices and many members will have to give up their second jobs that there do after spending a night sleeping in station.

Having said all that I believe you do a good job but these disputes should be sorted out with the county councils that employ you, ok have a national pay scale but for those who live in expensive areas should get an allowance. At the moment the puplic are 60/40 on your side but watch your support dwindle when people start dying!! It will take a long time to win back the support you presently enjoy if this nation has to endure a long drawn out strike, it'll take more than a Fireman Sam cartoon!!


Let's get back to the meat of the issue on our own site.  I don't care if the firemen(persons) strike after all we will see a compensating increase in our saleries as a result.  

What is more important is the complete arrse that LAND is making of meeting the commitment.  Thats why they take control of real Ops in PJHQ!  Anybody in UK know what they're doing for christmas yet?
Quick query (sorry to take it back to the non mil'y)... obviously 25 years ago the pay scheme was agreed after the strike, now suddenly there's a demand for a 40% pay rise.  What exactly has the union been doing over the intervening period?   Shouldn't they have been negotiating annually for better terms, conditions and pay, thus negating the current situation?  Once the firemen achieve some kind of settlement I suggest they withhold union dues until the leadership changes as they don't seem to have been working for the rank and file.

Christmas?   I should coco! ::)
Hello all,

Before I start may I wish you all a safe and happy christmas. It may be a few weeks away but who knows what will happen next.

To answer some of the points made by previous posters. We got our pay formula in 1978 after our one and only national strike. Our conditions of service are negotiable with our employers at a  legally constituted committee called the National Joint Council for Local Authority Fire Services. Year in and year out the pay formula came up with a figure (called the upper quartile median) which gave us our pay rise. Year in and year out we negotiate with our employers at the NJC over our conditions of service.

In May 2001 we, the FBU membership, asked our Executive Council to look at our pay and determine whether or not a new formula was needed or if the current one was still effective (after 20 odd years it was about time) as it was appearing to show some signs of lagging behind other pay awards. The result was startling even for us. The facts and figures came not from the sky by government departments, government accountants and would you believe the government itself - we were underpaid and we should be on the same as workers in the Associate Professional and Technical grades (average £35k)!!! We then delved deeper and to our amazement found that in comparison to others within the classification what we do as professionals should give us a wage of around £30k. Hence our claim, which we submitted in May 2002. This begs the question why are we being villified by all sides for asking for what HMG say we are worth?

In the meantime we have continued to negotiate our conditions of employment with our employers - generally from a weakened position as we are a small minority on the NJC and almost everything they want they manage to push through the NJC (my conditions have change greatly since I joined in 1987). However, it is interesting to note that the things some of our employers (the LGA) are saying we need to modernise today they originally asked to modernise about 5 years ago but got defeated on by the majority of the NJC (including HMG representatives) and continue to do so because they are not about MODERNITY but about CUTTING BACK, be it pay (overtime and allowances etc..), our leave, our working patterns, even YOUR fire cover. It is also being prersented as fact that we are seen as the block to progress. After having female firefighters for over 20 years there are very few stations throughout the UK that have any facilities for women (toilets, locker space, showers etc...). How much public support would we get if we took action over our allowances or reimbursements do you think? Which begs the question what are they really after with this review?

The only other times we have gone on strike have been to defend you against the cuts to your protection that our employers continually propose. In GMC there is a campaign up and running to save appliances in the greater Manchester area at this moment. Interestingly HMG recently reviewed the fire service (The Pathfinder Trials) and startlingly concluded that  the level of fire service protection would have to be increased by 100% - upgrading of stations and appliances, more firefighters, more equipment etc... to adequately protect you the public. Is it happening?

I leave the conclusions for you to dwell on.


Bla Bla Bla mr fireman what a crock of shi* if i had it my way the army would take over your stations and carry out correct training then we would see who is moaning
come on man face it you are being greedy you dont see us asking for a 40% pay rise and we could be in a NBC enviroment at any time or deployed in some shi*hole any where in the world living in tents so sort it out ???
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