Welsh government improves pension offer while Westminster refuses to meet ahead of 24hr strike in England

The Welsh government has confirmed it will offer an improved pension proposal for its firefighters in response to concerns raised by the Fire Brigades Union.

This improvement means that firefighters, retiring at age 55, will see a reduction of around 9% of their pension instead of the 22% that English firefighters will experience under unworkable proposals that are set to be imposed at Westminster.

The FBU is still raising other concerns with the Welsh government in relation to its pension proposals but the union acknowledges this is a significant development.

This improvement is in contrast to the Westminster government who now refuse to meet with the FBU, despite a number of written requests, to negotiate a solution to the firefighters’ pension dispute.

Matt Wrack, FBU general secretary, said: “This is a significant improvement in the proposals and will be welcomed by firefighters in Wales.

“This improved offer shows what is possible when both sides sit down and discuss options.

“It should send a clear message to DCLG and Penny Mordaunt that firefighters in England are getting a much worse deal in their pension under Westminster proposals that are unacceptable, unfair and unworkable.

“Instead of talking to us Penny Mordaunt and DCLG are still standing behind a worthless Parliamentary guarantee that the FBU has exposed as a complete lie.”

Firefighters in England will strike for 24 hours on 25 February from 7am.

The actuarial reduction refers to how much the value of a pension is reduced by when taken early.

Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland have devolved powers in relation to firefighters’ pension proposals.

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