Firefighters in Newham to strike next week over pensions

Firefighters from across four stations were involved in tackling the blaze in Barking Road Picture:

Firefighters from across four stations were involved in tackling the blaze in Barking Road Picture: Tony Gay - Credit: Archant

Firefighters will go on strike next Friday in a national walk-out as part of their ongoing dispute with the government over pensions.

Members of the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) in Newham will walk out on July 10 from 10am and 7pm and will be the fifteenth in the union’s campaign.

The dispute centres on the government’s plans to raise the retirement age for firefighters from 55 to 60 and increase their pension contributions.

The union fears its members will lose their jobs if they fail fitness tests and cannot find other work in the fire service if the retirement age is increased.

Matt Wrack, FBU general secretary, said: “The FBU has wanted to settle our dispute for a long time, but the government at Westminster is simply not listening.


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“If they won’t listen and won’t negotiate then this is the result — and they should face more of the same if necessary.”

Fire Minister Brandon Lewis said: “The government believes a solution can be reached, but not under the shadow of industrial action, which only serves to damage firefighters’ good standing with the public.

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“The deal on the table is fair and gives firefighters one of the most generous pensions in the public sector.”

He added: “Public safety will remain the primary focus. All fire and rescue authorities have robust and well tested plans in place that include back up support if needed.”

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