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Escalating strikes could still rescue the fight for firefighters’ pensions

This article is over 7 years, 2 months old
Issue 2430

Tory fire minister Penny Mordaunt sent out a letter last week attacking firefighters’ strikes and refusing to change her position over pensions.

The Tories want to make firefighters work until they are 60 or face losing up to half of their pension.

Mordaunt said she took “great offence” at the FBU union’s opposition to this. 

The FBU executive council met on Monday of this week, with details yet to emerge as Socialist Worker went to press.

The London Regional Committee (LRC) of the FBU union also met on Monday to discuss where next in the dispute.

Time is running out to beat the Tories’ attacks. Firefighters in England completed a 

four-day strike earlier this month. But since it ended the union has called no further action. 

This is a mistake. The stop and start nature of the dispute has hampered momentum and the mood for action. The fight is still winnable—but it will take hard-hitting strikes, not lobbying and protests.

Yusuf Timms, FBU south west London area secretary, told Socialist Worker, “This position wasn’t inevitable. We have to stop the passive, timid approach.”

At the LRC Yusuf proposed calling a meeting with members in the North West region, who have also called for more strikes. This was agreed.

The meeting also pledged £750 for tenants fighting eviction from the New Era Estate in Hackney, east London.

FBU protest against Penny Mordaunt at the opening of new West Norwood fire station. Tues 25 November, 1pm, West Norwood fire station, 210 Knights Hill, London SE27 0QA

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