Coronavirus: FBU organisational measures

Circular: 2020HOC0186MW

Dear Brother/Sister

Coronavirus: FBU organisational measures

The Executive Council met last week to discuss the Coronavirus crisis.  A series of measures are being put in place to address the various urgent challenges we all face. This circular updates members on the organisational measures put in place by the union. It does not address issues of health, safety and welfare or conditions of service matters. Please follow the FBU website and social media for further updates.

All Members’ circulars

The circulation of All Members’ circulars by post will cease for the present. Brigade officials will be asked to assist in ensuring that all such circulars are distributed to every workplace and as widely as possible to FBU members.

Annual Conference

The Annual Conference of the union, scheduled for May, has been postponed. The Executive Council authorised Head Office to explore alternative arrangements with the venue for re-arranging a conference later in the year.

FBU and other meetings

In view of the general and developing public health advice, meetings organised by the FBU will, in general, be avoided and cancelled. Head Office has put in place systems for video discussion and online conferencing etc.

Officials at local level are also putting such measures into place. Further assistance and advice will follow.

The Executive Council was clear that the union must and will continue to function. There are numerous issues (health and safety; operational; conditions of service; duty systems and hours) which need to be urgently addressed at local and national level and arrangements need to be put in place to ensure this can happen.

It may also be the case that, in certain circumstances face-to-face meetings do need to take place. This may arise, for example, as a result of actions or decisions taken by employers/management, for example disciplinary or grievance matters. If there is any doubt about any situation, please contact your local FBU brigade officials in the first instance.

FBU Education

All FBU education events (including the FBU women’s school) have been cancelled until the end of July 2020 and will be reviewed before then.

FBU elections

In the current circumstances, branch meetings cannot generally be held in the normal way. The Executive Council therefore agreed not to commence the next round of FBU elections. This decision will be kept under review, taking account of rule book and statutory requirements.  Elections already underway will proceed.

Grenfell walks

FBU attendances at the monthly Grenfell walk and third anniversary walk (including travel arrangements, accommodation etc.) have been cancelled. In any case, the walk itself has been cancelled and this is likely to remain the case.

FBU Head Office: AIF, Legal, Membership

Working arrangements for FBU Head Office have been altered to take account of public health advice and the safety and welfare of staff and officials. This means a shift to working from home/remotely.

This means that queries to Head Office staff on issues such as legal matters, AIF or membership may be subject to some delay.

N.B. Please raise queries in the first instance with local FBU officials. An updated list will be provided on the FBU website.

Matters which need to be addressed at a regional or national level will be passed to the appropriate FBU official at each level.

FBU website

The union’s website will be used as much as possible to provide advice and information. Please follow the FBU via the website and social media in order to keep informed of developments.

Thank you for all the efforts you are undertaking in the face of the current crisis.

Best wishes.

Yours fraternally

Matt Wrack
General Secretary

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