July 24 2014 Latest news:
Friday, June 6, 2014
Firefighters will stage the first 24-hour walkout of their long-running dispute with the Government over changes to their pensions.
Essex firefighters will be among those across England and Wales will stage their longest strike of their three-year campaign on Thursday (June 12) – starting at 9am.
A second, shorter strike is set for 10am-5pm on Saturday, June 21.
The Fire Brigade Union (FBU) said that in addition to the two strikes, firefighters will no longer not carry out any voluntary overtime or will call a temporary halt on training “strikebreakers”.
The FBU has staged a series of strikes following a proposal that the pension age for firefighters was increased from 55 to 60 – an age the FBU says would prevent firefighters from being able to do their jobs. They would also have to increase the amount they contribute to their pensions.
Matt Wrack, general secretary of the FBU, said: “It is as ever a difficult decision for us to take, but the only way for us to resolve this unnecessary and costly dispute is for the Government to start listening to reason.”
A spokesman for Essex County Fire & Rescue said the service will have resilience arrangements in place to provide fire cover across the county.