Efforts to resolve the ongoing dispute between London Fire Brigade and the Fire Brigades Union have stalled, following a meeting this morning.
An FBU statement read: "Last night on national television, the leader of the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority, Brian Coleman, invited us to conciliation talks at 9am this morning. It's dreadfully disappointing that after four hours there was still no sign of him or the Chief Fire Officer, Ron Dobson. Regrettably, the brigade representatives in attendance had nothing new to say to us. The LFEPA proposals on new working hours would seriously disrupt firefighters' family lives and lead to cuts in fire cover. All the same, the LFEPA does not have to reach agreement with us on shifts to get us to call off the strikes. They just have to withdraw the sacking notices that were sent out on August 11th."
London Fire Brigade, meanwhile, released a statement of its own. Brian Coleman said: "The compromise of an 11 hour day and 13 hour night shift is achievable through talks, and the FBU have today walked away. Our message is simple - call off the strikes now and meet us on the November 5 at the Resolution Advisory Panel which has the ability to resolve this dispute. The continuing determination by the FBU to take strike action is unnecessary, unjustified and will be viewed unsympathetically by Londoners. This dispute centres on proposed changes to make Londoners even safer from fires."
If no agreement is reached, London firefighters will hold a two-day strike, beginning on November 5, as well as a shorter strike on November 1.
Posted 27 October 2010