The latest wave of industrial actions was implemented from Tuesday, 27 April 2021 and this was advised to the MFS management by both Wordback No 18 on 24 April and by correspondence directed to the Chief Officer, seeking (for the fourth time in correspondence this year alone) that as SAMFS Chief Officer, he meets with the elected voice of firefighters in relation to the matters in dispute.
That is all he is asked to do. Meet and have dialogue, explore resolutions. So it’s more than disappointing that there has not yet been any response to us from him.
Other that is, than sending out senior members of management reportedly seeking to break the industrial action by urging other UFU members to simply ignore the bans and now issuing an instruction Memo 30, directing members to break bans.
Presumably the CO is also directing UFU members to continue to accept greater risk to firefighters and the community, suffer constant appliance break downs, delays and inefficiencies, while putting up with holding things together with zip ties. As we watch the resourcing of the MFS spiralling downwards year after year.
The Chief knows that all he has to do for the bans to be lifted immediately is to respond to our request for a meeting on Friday or earlier, or any time at his convenience. We are merely seeking that he genuinely explores options for resolution with us and consider standing up for firefighters.
State Council understands membership interest in various activities and training courses and we have tried hard to accommodate essential matters within the bans (e.g. SFQ Level 2 and Recruit Upskilling continuing) however the refusal of the chief to meet our union to discuss operational concerns is disrespectful to firefighters, and clearly requires a firmer response.
State Council resolved that until the Chief Officer agrees to meet the UFU in relation to the issues in dispute, the industrial action would be escalated commencing Tuesday, 27 April 2021:
➢ Operational “Acting up” Ban is reinstated – The UFU is highlighting that we are still yet to see a revised SAP36. The current document is not relevant to current staffing practices (to say the least) and with even more SFFQ personnel on the way the revision is even more pressing.
➢ Full Passive Shift – Full-Time firefighters (booster tests, recruit upskill and SFQ L 2 course will continue)
➢ Union T-Shirts continue to be worn by all members. And if you are feeling the cold, fabulous union hoodies are available from the union office for under cost price, which can also be worn.
➢ All Opportunities to be in the public eye will continue, including truck checks on the front apron and Proactive drilling as arranged by members for public education purposes.
➢ Fire Alarm Reporting Continuation of restriction of codes in AIIRS Reports
➢ Allocation of overtime costs to a new cost centre will remains banned.
We continue to call on the Marshall government to listen to firefighters’ concerns about the current inadequate resourcing of the SAMFS and the impact of it on firefighter and public safety.
It is no less important that the MFS leadership group stand up to be counted on these critical issues, and to conscientiously do the job they are appointed to do.
Members are reminded that the Safety and Resourcing Campaign industrial action is protected action under the Fair Work Act and all that is required of members, if given a direction which contravenes the bans, is to politely advise that you are unable to comply due to the industrial action. Please refer any concerns in relation to this to the union office.
And remember that it is an offence for the employer to take any adverse action against a union member participating in protected action.
United we bargain, divided we beg.