Firefighters' union backs new shifts deal
Firefighters' union leaders today endorsed a deal aimed at ending a bitter dispute over shift times in London.
The London Regional Committee of the Fire Brigades Union voted overwhelmingly to back new shift patterns, which were accepted last month by firefighters.
The row led to a series of strikes in the capital last year and almost led to a walkout on Bonfire Night.
Under the new deal, firefighters will work 10.5 hour day shifts and 13.5 hour night shifts, compared with the previous nine hour day and 15 hour night pattern.
Ian Leahair, the FBU's executive member for London region, said: "We are glad that we are within touching distance of resolving this industrial dispute. Our members have stood firm, and in the end the brigade was forced to reach agreement with us rather than carry out their threat of mass sackings.
"The agreement provides for new working patterns which are more amenable to our members than the brigade's original proposals. We will now concentrate on tying up the loose ends, and formally bringing the dispute to an end."
Ron Dobson, London Fire Commissioner, said: "The FBU have said that the London Regional Committee has accepted to enter into a collective agreement, which is welcome news. Unfortunately they've also told us that despite reaching a collective agreement the trade dispute remains in being. I'd hoped agreement would mean an official end to the dispute, and to arrange for the 27 fire appliances that have been on standby to be returned to the fire stations."
Chairman of the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority, Councillor Brian Coleman, said: "I'm flabbergasted by the position the FBU have taken and had hoped to put a final end to the dispute today. I don't know why the union are telling us they'll enter into an agreement and say that the dispute continues. My aim is to get things back to normal as soon as possible."
The brigade said the 27 appliances removed from service during last year's strikes will only be returned when the threat of further action has been lifted.
- 2 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 4 The most powerful passports in the world
- 5 Chinese student carries disabled friend to school every day for three years
Nepal earthquake: How you can help victims of the Kathmandu disaster
Nepal earthquake in pictures: Photos show devastation caused by 7.8 magnitude earthquake
Royal baby: Live updates as superbug closes ward at St Mary's Hospital in London where Duchess of Cambridge is due to give birth
Teaching profession headed for crisis as numbers continue to drop and working lives become 'unbearable'
General Election 2015: The photo of a tree that proves the Tories have an image problem
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
£26000 - £28000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: Senior Accounts Assistan...
£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
£22000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is part of a Group...
£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you a a young, dynamic pers...