Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

FIRE DISPUTE: 'AUDIT COMMISSION REPORT IS NO BARRIER TO PAYING DUE INCREASES'

  • Comment
An ...
An analysisof the Audit Commission report into progress on the government's modernisation programme for the fire service shows that 'huge strides' are being made in nearly all brigades.

The commission report is based on a diagnosis of around 400 areas of fire brigade work and each fire authority is given a separate 'traffic light' signal in each category. The commission describes the green light as 'gold standard'.

Out of the 400 possible signals only 49 (11%) are red, 150 are green (around 39%) and 201 are amber (50%). Green lights outnumber red lights by 3 to 1.

Mike Fordham, Fire Brigades Union assistant general secretary, said: 'The results are crystal clear: the momentum of change in the fire and rescue service is rapid and growing. Huge strides in implementing the government's modernisation programme are being made in nearly all fire brigades.'

The FBU is balloting on industrial action after the employers refused to pay a 3.5 per cent increase due from last November and a further 4.2 per cent rise due from 1 July.

'After rejecting agreement to release the long overdue pay rises at a negotiating meeting on 2 August, the fire service national employers declared that they needed 'more time to study the [Audit Commission] report and to get expert advice before reaching a decision on it.

'The fact is that the only verification by 'experts' under the June 2003 Agreement was to be carried out by the Audit Commission.

'Further, the employers were in possession of the findings weeks ahead of the August 2 meeting. There is no barrier to paying the increases which are due to our members,' said Mr Fordham.

The FBU has called a meeting of the fire service national joint council on 26 August. 'We are hoping that at that meeting national employers will reach full and final agreement with the FBU so firefighters and emergency fire control staff can get on with the job of protecting the public.'

The industrial action ballot closes on 31 August.

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.