Socialist Worker

Essex firefighters set to strike

Issue No. 2309

Over 1,000 firefighters in Essex were set to strike for eight hours on Thursday of this week.

Their FBU union says that if the latest cuts go ahead, one in five firefighters in the county will have lost their jobs since 2008.

The union was in conciliation talks at Acas as Socialist Worker went to press.

lThe union has set future dates for a one-hour strike on 7 July, 24 hours on 18 July, two hours on 18 August and five hours on 18 October.

No national action

The FBU leadership again called no national action over pay, jobs or pensions at its conference—but did abolish the union’s equality representatives.

This year’s scaled-down “special conference” was the first to be held since the union voted to switch to biennial conferences last year to cut costs.

The only thing that seemed to be special about the conference was that executive council resolutions all carried while delegates hardly got a look in.

In the debate on reorganisation of the union, delegates arguing to keep the LGBT, black and ethnic minority, and women’s reps got good applause.

But when it came to the vote, the sections lost. They will now have no voting reps at any level of the union. This prompted them to leave the floor of conference in protest.

Problems in the FBU will not be solved by axing equalities sections, but by fighting back.

Jaz Thomas, vice chair, Avon FBU

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Tue 26 Jun 2012, 17:32 BST
Issue No. 2309
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