The Marshall government and MFS management have persisted in refusing to discuss resourcing, in correspondence received this week.
And it seems the “increased funding” this government says they have provided to the MFS has escalated even further – first they said it was $35 million then $46.5 million, $55 million, $67.5 million and this week in the media it has risen to $69.7 million! Perhaps the 4th floor is rolling in money they are not spending on its intended purpose, like the upgrade of the executive suite?
While we know there is wastage, all these extra funds certainly don’t show up in the budget papers, so sadly it appears this is largely more political spin/smoke and mirrors.
We are further advised that providing firefighters with fit for purpose appliances, equipment and training to do the job “is not an industrial matter”, yet resourcing was indeed the key issue in the last round of enterprise agreement (EA) negotiations without a problem. More smoke and mirrors.
Our union has sought discussions with the employer on resourcing both as part of the EA agenda or outside of it, only to continue to be met with a brick wall and silly political games… and no meeting.
It is indeed disappointing that MFS management align themselves with this irresponsible approach and we have called on the Chief to put his effort into seeking a resolution of this matter. He knows the MFS is underfunded and the impact of that on firefighters; this is what leaders are paid to do.
Meantime, in addition to our delegations of firefighters to Members of Parliament, we have sought a meeting with Premier Marshall to discuss resourcing and asset management plans. No answer yet but we will keep you informed.
INDUSTRIAL CAMPAIGN BANS, ACTIONS AND LIMITATIONS
In the absence of agreement to discuss resourcing, commencing 08:00 hours on Friday, 15 January 2021 (D shift), the following industrial campaign actions will come into effect until further notice:
No Act Ups
Operational on-shift act ups are banned.
Daily Work Routine
The Public Holiday routine is rescinded changing back to the suspension of the daily work routine and daily activities will be as agreed by members at station.
Active Public Campaigning
Members at worksites will determine and participate in in public drilling at key locations with the purpose of demonstrating firefighting skills and engaging with the public.
The key focus is to educate the public regarding the state of the fleet and resourcing within the MFS; handouts with key points are provided for distribution in the community, available to download here.
Fire Alarm Reporting
Ban on entry of Automatic Fire Alarm details into AIIRS.
Ban on Cost Centre
The allocation of overtime costs to a new cost centre (currently numbered 817) remains banned.
Note: Scheduled training is exempt from industrial action and is to proceed as normal.
Members to wear UFUSA T-shirt on both day shifts.
“T Shirt Tuesday” for day workers who can wear the union T-shirt all day.
Retained Firefighters wear union T-shirt to training.
Shirts worn over top of T-shirts are BANNED.
It seems our signage had an impact on those at whom it was directed with the expected result of the employer attempting to gag the voice of firefighters. Of course we will not be silenced, and members will continue to campaign on this important issue. We do appreciate the Chief’s assistance however in attracting media attention to our campaign.
Our campaign materials are currently being collected and will be repurposed. More new materials will also be coming out to members in the near future for you to use innovatively (Shop Stewards will coordinate). State Council has determined that this part of our campaign activity will be significantly ‘changed up’ and our campaign actions escalated in coming weeks.
The views and ideas of members are encouraged and appreciated so please do forward to firstname.lastname@example.org at your earliest opportunity or speak to your local Shop Steward or State Councillor. Thank you all for your strong support for this campaign.
Use of social media is being embraced by members in this 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.
Thank you to everyone who has forwarded photographs and videos illustrating the resourcing concerns; please keep them coming in. It is critical that our community sees just why we are campaigning so that they don’t fall for Marshall’s smoke and mirrors.