Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/636/10148

From The Socialist newspaper, 1 September 2010

London firefighters ballot for action

Around 1,000 firefighters poured into a mass meeting of the London Fire Brigades Union (FBU) on 24 August. They gathered to discuss the union's strategy in response to the London Fire Authority's (LFA) attempt to rip up their contracts.

Neil Cafferky

The LFA is proposing to sack 5,557 firefighters and re-employ them on worse terms and conditions. At the moment firefighters work a nine-hour day shift and a 15-hour night shift. LFA bosses want to change this to two equal 12-hour shifts. Expected upshots following this change are fire stations closing, fire engines removed from night-time service and even cuts in frontline staff.

Matt Wrack, general secretary of the FBU, outlined the political context of the dispute. To loud applause and shouts of approval, Matt declared that firefighters had not caused the economic crisis and they were not going to pay for the consequences.

Ian Leahair, FBU national executive member for London, took the floor to explain the union's strategy to go from lobbies, to action short of a strike and then strike action. The first ballot will close on 17 September. Action following this ballot could begin as early as 24 September. The day before the ballot closes, on 16 September, the FBU will hold a lobby of the London Fire Authority.

If there is no progress by 6 September, the union will give seven days notice of its intention to ballot members for strike action. The ballot result will be out in the week beginning 11 October. Ian Leahair pledged that once the ballot process begins it will not be called off, short of management withdrawing their threat to sack firefighters.

He also promised, to loud applause, that any deal reached with management would be in writing with the final say on whether to accept or reject it resting with the London membership.

There were two guest speakers on the platform. One was Labour MP John McDonnell, the convenor of the FBU parliamentary group. The other was Socialist Party and Unite member Suzanne Muna, representing the National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN).

Suzanne spoke about the purpose of the NSSN, to bring together grassroots union activists in their common struggle to defend the working conditions and living standards of working people.

Commenting on the refusal of some union leaders to organise a fightback, Suzanne raised the NSSN lobby of the TUC conference in Manchester on 12 September.

The aim of the lobby will be to push the TUC to organise a national demonstration against cuts. This proposal was greeted with enthusiastic applause by firefighters. By the end of the meeting the huge wedge of leaflets NSSN supporters had brought along had all gone.

If even a fraction of the energy, determination and militancy that was present at this meeting can be transferred to Manchester it should be a very good lobby indeed.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 1 September 2010:

A fightback can stop cuts


Youth fight for jobs

Our future under attack


Anti-cuts campaign

Anti-cuts movement builds momentum in Plymouth

North Staffs TUC public meeting against cuts

Cuts hit poor hardest


Anti-racism

Fighting the far right in Bradford


Socialist Party news and analysis

Labour's three stooges aid Con-Dem coalition

Government cuts hit our benefits

Keep Middle Street centre open

Defend school meals


Socialist Party feature

Slashing public services: do councillors have 'no choice'?

Lobby the TUC conference


International socialist news

Kazakhstan: Human rights activist beaten and arrested

Worldwide protests against brutal attack on three Russian socialists

Pakistan flood disaster: Workers' solidarity appeal


International feature

General strike movement sweeps South Africa


Socialist Party workplace news

Battles ahead on London Underground

London firefighters ballot for action

Jobs threat at RBS

Coventry mail centre closes

Civil service jobs under the cosh


 

Home   |   The Socialist 1 September 2010   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  




Related links:

London:

triangleNorth London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses

triangleNo cuts - hands off King George A&E!

triangleTories scrap the NHS pay cap: now fight for real-terms pay rises!

triangleTower Hamlets Socialist Party: "You can't have capitalism without racism" (Malcolm X)

triangleTower Hamlets Socialist Party: Capitalism in Crisis - is Corbyn the answer?

Firefighters:

triangleSolidarity with Catalonia - the people have the right to decide

triangleSurrey FBU pass no confidence motion

triangleSouth London tower block residents plan safety campaign

triangleThe Socialist Inbox

FBU:

triangleEscalate summer strike wave into coordinated action to defeat the pay cap

triangleTories weak: time for the TUC to act

triangleUnions call for action after Grenfell

Fire:

triangleNo more fire deaths - ensure safety now!

triangleLedbury tenants fight for decent homes

Matt Wrack:

triangleSupport the campaign to readmit expelled trade union militants

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

19/10/17

North West

Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay

18/10/17

Democratic rights

Conference on state spies: who's watching who?

18/10/17

Leeds

Striking back against sackers' charter at Leeds Uni

18/10/17

Royal Mail

Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

18/10/17

PCS

Balloting members on the pay cap

18/10/17

Art

'Dazzling' Bad Art show points to socialist future

18/10/17

Council

Sheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison

18/10/17

South West Wales

Hundreds turn out for rally aimed at removing west Wales Tory MP

18/10/17

NHS

Uprising to save the NHS!

18/10/17

Socialism

Can you donate to the Socialism 2017 appeal?

18/10/17

East London

No cuts - hands off King George A&E!

18/10/17

North London

North London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses

18/10/17

BAE

Nationalise to save jobs at BAE Systems

18/10/17

Schools

Schools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now

18/10/17

Swansea

Socialist Students 'welcome' Hillary Clinton to Swansea

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle19 Oct Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay

triangle18 Oct Russia, October 1917: When workers took power

triangle18 Oct Tories torn - bin them now

triangle18 Oct Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

triangle18 Oct Balloting members on the pay cap

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party imploding...drive out the Tories

More ...

triangle21 Oct Birmingham: NSSN Solidarity Forum

triangle23 Oct Chesterfield Socialist Party: The continuing struggle for abortion rights

triangle24 Oct Liverpool Socialist Party: The October Russian Revolution 100 years ago to the day

triangle25 Oct Salford Socialist Party: The October 1917 Russian revolution

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2