Socialist Worker

Firefighters’ action over cuts

Issue No. 1999

Firefighters in Hertfordshire Fire Brigades Union (FBU) were set to announce the result of a strike ballot on Tuesday of this week, with strike action possibly starting as soon as Tuesday of next week.

The ballot is over cuts to the fire service in the county. Herts county councillors plan to cut up to 50 frontline firefighter posts, close Radlett and Bovingdon stations and downgrade Watford and Royston stations.

“This is about old fashioned cash cuts which will result in the loss of frontline fire services,” said Tony Smith, vice-chair of Herts FBU. “We have campaigned for many months against these cuts and our very strong views have been well known.”

London FBU has pledged its full support for any action that the Herts firefighters decide to take.

They have written to London’s chief fire officer seeking assurances that London crews will not be deployed to cover deficiencies in Herts during any strike action.

“In our job, when everyone else is running away, firefighters step forward and then rely on the back-up of their workmates – from wherever they may come,” said Mick Shaw of London FBU.

“We rely on each other and sometimes our lives depend on it. Fire crews in London have made clear that we fully support our colleagues in Hertfordshire in their lawful strike action in the fight against the cuts.”

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Sat 6 May 2006, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 1999
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