Fire Brigades Union

Fire Brigades Union

January 18, 2010 12:16 ET

South Yorkshire Fire Crews to Take More Strike Action

SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND--(Marketwire - Jan. 18, 2010) - South Yorkshire fire crews will take further strike action after managers refused to withdraw the threat to sack 744 firefighters. The Fire Brigades Union had given the fire authority until 4pm today (Monday 18 January) to withdraw the threat of mass sackings to force through new contracts.

The strike action announced today starts on 27 January at 09.00 and ends on 4 February at 18.00hrs. The action is in addition to a 48 hour strike starting at 09.00hours 24 January and ending at 09.00 hours 26 January which the union announced on Friday.

The fire authority want to force through new contracts that increase the day shift from 9 hours to 12 hours with different start and finish times, rest breaks and work routines. The issue was meant to be dealt at ACAS by binding arbitration but talks to enable that broke down last week.

FBU Regional Secretary Ian Murray said: "The fire authority's managers derailed the talks and broke the deal that we reached in November. They would only agree to go to ACAS if they could set the terms and conditions.

"The fire authority also agreed to suspend the dismissal process. Managers re-started it and have given firefighters until today to agree to changes to their contracts and the threat to sack 744 firefighters is a reality.

"Local fire crews have been trying to drag managers to ACAS for many months and obstacles have been placed in our way at every turn. The latest block is the fire authority insisting they only want ACAS to resolve part of the dispute and not all of it.

"Both sides agreed that arbitration was the way to resolve this dispute and we have put up other alternatives which have also been rejected. The fire authority must stop blocking progress, honour agreements and stop threatening to sack firefighters so they can get their way.

"They have time to see sense before any strike action takes place. If they don't there is now more strike action in place and we will see that through."

Contact Information

  • Regional and local media contacts
    Fire Brigades Union
    Ian Murray
    07967 103345
    Fire Brigades Union
    Jeremy Pagan
    07977 931086