Sitrep 6/2023: Labor promises 600 new firies; SGMs and Logs of Claims
February 3, 2023
Labor Promises 600 New Firefighters
In a massive announcement for the FBEU, Opposition Leader Chris Minns has today committed to bolster FRNSW staff by 600 additional professional firefighters if elected.
This announcement is the biggest investment in professional firefighters seen in the past decade and it has been driven and won by FBEU members.
In the past ten years, the state of NSW has grown by half a million new dwellings and by almost 1 million new residents. In stark contrast, our firefighting numbers are 76 fewer than they were at the start of that period.
Members will note that in recent times we have seen very little advocacy from FRNSW in growing firefighter numbers or updating the equipment we need to get the job done. This is despite the FRNSW ELT doubling their own numbers in the past ten years.
Today’s commitment is the result of your advocacy for your Union and for the profession. I want to congratulate all of our members and delegates who have participated in recent community forums, meetings with decision-makers, and any and all recent actions to ensure that professional firefighters are at the forefront of the decision-makers’ minds.
This commitment is one of many that we are progressing with political parties across the board ahead of the March State Election. This win demonstrates that when FBEU members speak out about the issues we face in protecting the community, we will be heard.
With seven weeks left until the State Election, now is the time for us maintain the pressure so that we can continue to ensure the Government, whoever it may be, delivers for NSW Professional Firefighters and the community.
SGMs – Firefighters Overwhelmingly Endorse Award Log Of Claims
With the battle for additional resourcing and new firefighter numbers gaining pace, this week your State Committee Officials and FBEU team have been travelling across the state holding SGMs to seek endorsement from the membership for our proposed Log of Claims for the Permanent, Retained and D&D Award.
This Log of Claims represents an ambitious package of reform, to not just seek better terms and conditions for you as members, but also to ensure we have safe systems of work with appliances, equipment, and stations that are fit for purpose to ensure we can do our jobs and deliver a modern fire service to the people of NSW, while also protecting the safety and wellbeing of our members.
With 23 SGMs held across the week, hundreds of firefighters showed up to vote and have overwhelmingly endorsed the Log of Claims. An overwhelming majority of you agreed that we should take this Log of Claims to FRNSW and commence negotiations. 97% voted in favour of the proposed Permanent Award, 99% in favour of the proposed Retained Award and 96% in favour of the proposed D & D Award.
A meeting has been scheduled for Thursday next week where we will commence negotiations with FRNSW on your behalf.
As with our approach on the Log of Claims, we will continue to talk and consult with members as negotiations progress. We once again thank members for your time and commitment in the development of this Log of Claims and for the attendance and support at the SGMs this week.
A printable version of this Sitrep can be downloaded here.