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Firefighters to strike at the start of November
FIREFIGHTERS across Worcestershire will stage two strikes in the run up to Bonfire Night as part of a bitter row over pensions.
The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) announced today members will down tools between 6.30pm and 11pm on Friday, November 1 and again from 6am until 8am on Monday, November 4.
Although members of the union were due to go on strike last week, the action was called off after progress was made in talks.
But FBU general secretary Matt Wrack said today the government had refused to respond correctly to the union’s concerns.
"Firefighters face the sack towards the end of their career and the loss of their pension – that can't be right,” he said. “The employers promised to tackle the issue of firefighters facing the sack for failing fitness tests last week, only to say they can't offer any guarantees this week.
“That is simply not the way to run a public service.”
He added the government was now threatening to withdraw some concessions made in talks earlier this year.
"Their own report shows most firefighters cannot work beyond 55 - they are trying to bludgeon firefighters into an unworkable pension scheme,” he said. “We are not prepared to be bullied.
"Firefighters don't want to go on strike, but we are left with no option when the government and the employers refuse to deal with the problems of their own making."
Members of the union previously staged a four-hour strike – the first national walkout for a decade – last month.
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