Editor Andrew Ledgerton-Lynch identifies the most important, generation-defining issue that today’s Fire and Rescue Service needs to tackle urgently.
It is easy for our focus to wonder, directed as it is by global pandemics, war in Europe, cost of living crisis, crippling mental health complaints and multiple competing agendas vying for our attention, not just on a daily, but on a minute-by-minute basis.
The Fire and Rescue Service has quite rightly been preoccupied by all this and more, not least the Grenfell Tower Inquiry findings, the government response and the long-awaited fire reform white paper. The latter was finally launched and landed with not so much a thud as a shrug, hardly surprising given competing catastrophes.
The premise was hardly a cause for optimism, the report coming relatively soon after the reform agenda was launched by then Home Secretary Theresa May and so many reviews have highlighted the main problems, including Adrian Thomas’ infamously overlooked seminal critique on equality and diversity failings and the HMI’s amplification through the annual State of Fire proclamation/condemnation.