East Anglian firefighters fighting to save their fire service

Firefighters from the East of England will be in Parliament today (15 Nov) lobbying the government for more funding for fire services ahead of the Chancellor’s budget next week.

The lobby comes as the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) marks the 40th anniversary of the first ever national strike action taken by its members.

Riccardo La Torre, regional secretary of the FBU in Eastern England, said: “There are clear parallels between what firefighters faced in 1977 and today where firefighters again find themselves with worsening shift patterns, an unworkable pension scheme and significantly eroded pay.

“Forty years ago the brave men and women of the FBU fought for a fairer deal at work. As firefighters today, we owe much to their courage and stoicism. Now in 2017, firefighters face the same struggle to get a fair deal on pay. Many are struggling to make ends meet.

“We are heading to Parliament to take the issue directly to politicians and demand that Philip Hammond funds a fair pay deal that firefighters and emergency control staff deserve.”

Firefighters went out on strike for nine weeks beginning in November 1977. As a result, the FBU secured a pay formula that helped to increase wages in the service, a reduction in working hours to 42 hours a week, greater firefighter recruitment and an improved pension scheme.

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