Firefighters on strike over New Year

Falmouth Packet: Firefighters on strike over New Year Firefighters on strike over New Year

Firefighters in England and Wales will walk out on strike again today in their long-running dispute with the government over pensions.

The strike action is set to start this evening at 6.30pm and and is set to end at 12.30am on New Year’s Day

Fire Brigades Union General Secretary, Matt Wrack, said: “Christmas is just an ordinary working time for firefighters, and our members have been on the front line dealing with storms, floods and other emergencies every day.

“None of us wanted these strikes, but firefighters on duty over the festive period don’t have much to celebrate this year as they are being priced out of their pensions and face the sack because the government’s can’t accept that 60 year old men and women can’t meet the same fitness standards as 20 year olds.

“We need to see genuine dialogue and real negotiations to resolve this dispute, so perhaps the prime minister would like to come along to visit firefighters on New Year’s Eve and hear directly why they are so angry?”

The union says most firefighters who take home approximately £1,650 a month already pay £320 or more a month into their pensions, and from April 2014 this would rise for the third year in a row to over £340 a month (£4,000 a year), with many facing a fourth consecutive rise of 2.2 per cent in 2015.

The union argues that evidence suggests that at least two thirds of the current workforce could face either dismissal from the fire service or a reduction in their pensions of almost half because they are unable to maintain the fitness standards required by the fire service beyond the age of 55.

Comments (2)

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3:15pm Tue 31 Dec 13

Gillian Zella Martin 09 says...

I think the government needs to acknowledge that some people in many jobs cannot work effectively in later years of life, and could well spend a lot of time off sick, in addition to which, if people are not eligible for their state pensions until 67/68 years of age or thereabouts, there will be further reduced openings in employment for younger people. Surely it makes more sense to allow older people to claim their state pension earlier as opposed to paying unemployment payments to younger people alongside sickness payments for some older people.
I think the government needs to acknowledge that some people in many jobs cannot work effectively in later years of life, and could well spend a lot of time off sick, in addition to which, if people are not eligible for their state pensions until 67/68 years of age or thereabouts, there will be further reduced openings in employment for younger people. Surely it makes more sense to allow older people to claim their state pension earlier as opposed to paying unemployment payments to younger people alongside sickness payments for some older people. Gillian Zella Martin 09

4:05pm Tue 31 Dec 13

Toffer99 says...

I'd hate to have to rely on even a fit 60 year old to drag me out of a burning building.
https://twitter.com/
MattWrack/status/417
685393715109888/phot
o/1
I'd hate to have to rely on even a fit 60 year old to drag me out of a burning building. https://twitter.com/ MattWrack/status/417 685393715109888/phot o/1 Toffer99

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