Dorset Fire Brigades Union members join firefighter strikes across the country (From Bournemouth Echo)
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Dorset Fire Brigades Union members join firefighter strikes across the country
11:00am Saturday 2nd November 2013 in News
FIREFIGHTERS went on strike across the county last night in the first of two walkouts in the run-up to bonfire night.
Dorset Fire Brigades Union (FBU) members joined colleagues from across England, in protest at the government decision to only release full pensions to firefighters when they reach 60-years-old.
Defending the timing of the strike, Karen Adams, Dorset secretary of the FBU, said: “Look at our statistics and you’ll find we get hardly any calls over the firework period.”
County fire chief Darran Gunter confirmed that in 2012 DFRS attended only one property fire in the period around bonfire night.
Ms Adams, said: “Does the public want 60-year-old firefighters? No, they do not. It’s totally ludicrous to think that.”
Meanwhile, Fire Minister Brandon Lewis – who claims firefighters have one of the best public sector pensions in the country –described the strikes as “entirely unnecessary and avoidable.”
Firefighters walked out between 6.30-11pm last night, and will again on Monday from 6-8am.
Mr Gunter stressed: “While the industrial action is ongoing we will still be responding to 999 calls and we have 50 per cent of our appliances available.”
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