We have begun to receive reports of the various cuts proposals being prepared by local Fire and Rescue Services. More such cuts packages are expected to be revealed in the New Year. As we have reported in Firefighter and elsewhere, these cuts present the most serious attack on our Service in living memory. Unchallenged, they would seriously undermine the service provided to the public and would put the safety of Firefighters and local communities at risk.
For FBU members they will also lead to serious attacks on:
- Conditions of service
At its December business meeting the Executive Council discussed a strategy paper relating to these serious issues. The campaign against these attacks will be the main focus for our campaigning for a considerable time. One key event in relation to our campaign is a national demonstration called by the TUC against the austerity measures.
This demonstration will take place in London on Saturday March 26, 2011.
It is essential that there is a large contingent from the FBU on this demonstration. Our Campaign Coordinators have already started to discuss how this event can be built and how it links to our various local campaigns against cuts. In the New Year all Branches and FBU Committees will be asked to discuss how to encourage members to attend. There will be opportunities for members to meet to hear the case against the cuts and the development of the FBU campaign. In the New Year the union's website will also undergo a major re-design which we hope will enable us to improve the distribution of information.
We shall also need to discuss what industrial response may be necessary in relation to the attacks on our pay, pensions and conditions. A model Resolution for Branches has been drafted which will also be circulated early in the New Year and it will be essential that all Branches meet to discuss these vital issues.