Fire Brigades Union

Fire Brigades Union

March 23, 2011 08:01 ET

South West Firefighters and Control Room Staff to Join London Demo Against Cuts on 26 March

CORNWALL, ENGLAND--(Marketwire - March 23, 2011) - Firefighters and Control Room staff from across the South West will join hundreds of thousands of demonstrators from across the UK in London on Saturday 26th March to call for an alternative to the devastating plans to cut public services.

The march has been organized by the Trades Union Congress and is expected to be the largest protest for generations against the Governments deficit reduction plans which will see massive cuts to the services to people throughout the Region.

The Fire Service is not exempt from these proposed cuts although the 4 year reduction in budgets is to be backloaded to the last two years, which will mean year on year decreases in the money Fire Authorities receive from Central Government. This will have an impact on front line services, something the both parties in the Coalition pledged not to do.

There is an alternative to the Tory led Governments plans of slash and burn of vital public services. But this would need political will to introduce a fairer taxation system and to collect the billions of pounds of uncollected tax that large corporations and rich individuals get away with not paying.

Anger within the Fire Service is rising as working people are starting to see the effect of a pay freeze, an increase in pension contributions from 11% to 14%, inflation rising, threats to jobs and the loss of local services as bankers carry on collecting their £1m+ bonuses.

Tam McFarlane, Executive Council Member for the South West Region said "We have been inundated with messages of support for this march, our members, ordinary firefighters and control room staff are going up to London on Saturday by bus, train and car to tell the Government to halt their plans for public sector cuts. They will be joined together with health care workers, local government workers, postal workers, teachers and thousands from the private sector to demand that their voice is heard and listened to. Years of investment in our public services will be swept away in a maelstrom of cuts leaving the vulnerable at greater risk and in greater need, this cannot be right.

South West FBU Regional Secretary and Chair of the SW TUC, John Drake said "The people who are paying for the economic crisis caused by the financiers in the city are those who can least afford it and did nothing to cause it. This march is not just for trade union members but will also include community groups, service user groups and many other concerned citizens who care passionately about the high quality public services they currently enjoy. This Tory led Government knows the price of everything and the value of nothing as they start to dismantle the very services that the public hold dear. We will not stand idly by and watch this happen. Working people are starting to fight for their communities. This is the real Big Society.

Contact Information

  • Media Contacts
    Tam McFarlane
    John Drake
    Alistair Dunlop
    Firefighter Bath Fire Station
    Dominic Keen
    Firefighter Falmouth
    Devon & Somerset
    Stuart Kalber
    Simon Jones
    Control Room Operator
    Kevin Nelson
    Firefighter - Cheltenham
    01242 524030
    Brent Thornley
    Firefighter Swindon