As reported in Wordback No 38 of 2020, the campaign for improved resourcing of the MFS in order that you can do your job of protecting our community in a safe and professional manner, was endorsed unanimously by your UFUSA Shop Stewards and State Councillors on 28 October 2020.
The resolution was carried by representatives of both full-time and retained firefighters and campaign actions will encompass political, public, and industrial campaigning in order to achieve our objective of addressing inadequacies in our appliances, equipment, training resourcing and support.
Your commitment to the campaign is vital and it’s heartening that in the first few hours of the release of our membership survey today, you are overwhelmingly giving us feedback that you support the campaign and that you will participate in the campaign activities.
Our union is already engaging with politicians, educating and lobbying for their support, with varying degrees of success. You may be asked to participate in delegations of firefighters to visit local MPs in their electorate offices to explain why the campaign is so critical and to seek their assistance.
The campaign will encompass public activities which will highlight the campaign and help to explain to the public the challenges which firefighters are currently confronting in our work to protect our community. Members will be provided with handouts to assist in explaining the dire circumstances which bring us to this campaign and suggestions for ways in which they can support us.
Social media is being embraced by our union for the first time in such a campaign and if you wish, it would be great if you can follow us on Facebook here and encourage your family and friends to do so too.
As always, recruit squads are exempt from industrial action and this includes both full-time and retained recruits.
All scheduled training is also exempt from industrial action.
Support from non-members is always appreciated; however, they should not be encouraged to actively participate in any industrial actions as it would be unprotected.
Campaign materials including Placards, Banners and Stickers will be distributed to members as they become available, together with proposals on how they be utilised.
While seeking to limit it, we know there is likely to be some pain in these actions at some time for some members; our Solidarity means we will try to assist and stand by one another wherever this occurs. We are committed to remaining united, resolved, calm and courteous, whatever challenges we confront.
STAGE ONE OF ACTIONS, BANS AND LIMITATIONS
Stage One of industrial campaign actions will begin with B shift at the commencement of your day shift on Sunday, 8 November 2020, rolling on to all other following shifts for a full shift rotation of 8 days. Actions are as follows:
Suspension of the daily work routine
Active Public Campaigning
Organise and participate in public drilling at key locations, as determined by stations.
Engagement: engage with the public.
Demonstration: demonstrate the skills you have as a firefighter.
Education: educate the public regarding the state of the fleet and resourcing within the MFS; handouts with key points will be provided for distribution.
Fire Alarm Reporting
Do not submit Automatic fire alarm details into AIIRS
Operational members: first day shift will wear the UFU t-shirt for the full shift, in and off station.
“T Shirt Tuesday” for day workers who can wear the union T-shirt all day.
Members employed in Retained Stations are encouraged to wear the union T-shirt on training nights.
Shirts are NOT required over top of T-shirts.
If you do not yet have your one free UFUSA T-shirt, please call us or email to email@example.com your names and the sizes required at your Station (same garment so same size as your MFS issue) and we will try to get them out to you as soon as possible.
STAGES TWO & THREE OF ACTIONS, BANS AND LIMITATIONS
If no response or engagement is received from MFS / Government the campaign will progress to Stage Two, commencing with dayshift on Monday 16 November 2020, for the next 8 day shift rotation.
If there is no response or engagement received from the MFS/Government, STAGE THREE is scheduled to commence on 24 November 2020 and continue for the next 8 day shift rotation.
Details of Campaign Stages Two and Three activities will be made available as the date approaches; however, members are now given advance notice to assist you to prepare, that Stage Three will include the following action:
Work to rule
Adhere to shift times
Please don’t hesitate to contact your Shop Steward, State Councillors or the union office if you wish to make suggestions or provide feedback.
Our claim for adequate resourcing is both reasonable and fair yet the employer won’t even have a discussion about a plan to address it. Now is the time to ensure we have what it takes to protect the community professionally and safely.
BAD FAITH FROM MFS RE SFQ AND SO PROMOTIONS PROCESSES RESULTS IN DISPUTE
One can only wonder at the “thinking” of MFS management in relation to matters such as the SAMFS Memoranda 63 and 64 issued last week issued by the employer in the absence of any consultation or agreement being reached with the UFU.
These Memoranda deal with the calling of the 2021 Full-Time SO Promotion Process (63) and the call for applications to enrol in the Senior Firefighter Level 2 Qualified Development Program (64).
Not only are there serious errors contained within these documents including legalities, but management also advise of new arrangements which are to be introduced absent any discussion or agreement. Likely because they know we will disagree, there has not even been any prior advice of the proposal. It is simply not on.
Members directly affected by these matters can be assured that your union is committed to vigorously pursuing resolution of these matters through all available avenues to protect the interests of members now and into the future.
We regret the distress being experienced by those who have already contacted our office in relation to these matters.
Different versions of the so-called rationale emanating from different MFS executive managers indicates that the employer is up to what now appears to be every day skulduggery and are attempting to cover their tracks with ‘mistruths’. Sorry but it’s a disgrace – so much for the leadership being “Champions of Change” and building a better culture. What is it they say about a fish rotting?
Members will be kept updated.
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
The Union’s AGM will be held on Thursday, 26 November 2020 at 09:30 hours at the UFUSA office 148 South Road Torrensville.
The update on the Resourcing Campaign is sure to be a hot item on the agenda so your attendance will be greatly appreciated.
A delicious Christmas lunch will be provided at the conclusion of the meeting.
We look forward to seeing you there!