• Wed. Jun 19th, 2024

Firefighters take ongoing pay dispute to Holyrood

ByAymaan Sheikh

Nov 7, 2022
A fire engine with yellow Battenburg stripes.

On Thursday 27 October, hundreds of firefighters protested outside of Holyrood in response to a proposal for a five per cent pay rise. 

After being balloted for this pay rise, the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) has suggested its members should reject it, with another ballot expected for strike action.

The five per cent pay rise falls under the current inflation rate, which has hit as high as ten per cent in the UK in 2022.

The FBU had already rejected an offer for a two per cent pay rise prior to the five per cent offer, with general secretary Mike Wrack describing the initial offer as “insulting proposal.”

If the union’s membership rejects the five per cent pay rise offer, a ballot on strike action will be launched, expected to close before 14 November.

Scottish firefighters are also campaigning for reductions in service cuts and increased staff levels.

There are currently over 1000 fewer firefighters on duty in Scotland than there were in 2009.

According to Scottish FBU secretary John McKenzie, “firefighters and control room staff in Scotland have seen their pay cut by over £4000 in real terms.

“FBU members must be made a serious pay offer that addresses the cost-of-living crisis.”

The Scottish Government has said that the pay agreement between the Scottish Fire & Rescue Service and its workers is under the jurisdiction of Westminster.

Protests in Scotland regarding pay and working conditions for the fire brigade mirror those in Cornwall and Merseyside which have happened recently.

Scottish Fire And Rescue Service Scania Arp” by Tayside emergency vehicles is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.