The UFU State Council met yesterday and reviewed the campaign activities to date, the challenges ahead and the strategies necessary to continue to develop our campaign to achieve our objective of getting the Marshall government to negotiate on proper resourcing for firefighters to safely do the job of protecting our community.
It is interesting that in an emergency services Estimates hearing on 26 November 2020, Minister Tarzia made statements which for the first time acknowledge there are ongoing resourcing issues within the SA Metropolitan Fire Service. We have again asked to meet with him on this issue without any response to date. Meanwhile, the Marshall government keeps trumpeting that they have spent $67m on the MFS but no one can tell us where the money went if that is true.
Our State Council yesterday agreed that the Marshall government’s smoke and mirrors will not deter us from resolutely pursuing our resourcing campaign and we are gearing up for a long hard struggle which will involve taking our argument into multiple spheres of political, public and local community awareness, media, and industrial actions.
Of necessity our campaign will need to continue to be strategic and agile; as always, our solidarity is our strength. Following vigorous debate State Council determined that:
“This meeting of the UFU State Council resolves that the next stage of the resourcing campaign industrial action will operate from:
Start of shift (D) on Monday, 14 December 2020, to
Start of shift (D) on Friday, 15 January 2021
With the following actions:
➢ Public Holiday Routine
➢ Fire Alarm Reporting – Continuation of current restriction of codes in AIIRS Reports
➢ The allocation of overtime costs to a new cost centre (817) remains banned.
➢ Political Campaign – the UFUSA will continue to progress the political campaigning and lobbying of Members of Parliament of all parties, which will include delegations of firefighters to meet with local Members wherever there are MFS fire stations.
Stage 2 Action – The ban on acting up will be lifted during this period. 2
Stage 4 Actions are being developed by the State Council for implementation from the start of day shift (D) on 15 January 2021 with a view to the escalation of the public, industrial and political campaign going forward.”
Resourcing Campaign and publicity materials continue to be distributed to members across the state, with a focus now on Regional Operations Stations.
Many thanks once again to all who have assisted or are assisting in this process and also to those of you who are already proudly displaying the banners to educate our community about our campaign. If your Station has not yet received your campaign materials, or you need replacements, you can call us on 8352 7211 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know.
Meantime, please do keep on sending us your photos and information about the issues which make this campaign so critical.
SENIOR FIREFIGHTER LEVEL 2 QUALIFIED
A meeting of interested members in relation to the above was held on Tuesday, 8 December 2020 where concerns and relevant issues were raised and discussed.
As previously stated, we welcome the opportunity for members to enhance their skills and look forward to this occurring at all ranks. Accordingly, members involved are strongly urged by our union to participate in the SFF Level 2 Qualified process.
We continue to try to persuade the MFS of the benefits of employing modern training practices to support, encourage and develop skills rather than threaten disciplinary action and a reduction in rank, especially against employees they have been using to act up in the role for 2-3 years.
State Council yesterday unanimously endorsed notification to the employer of a dispute in relation to their threats and we have invoked the maintenance of the Status Quo provision clause 13 of the EA to safeguard our members’ rights.
The MFS has been formally advised that their proposed actions are both unlawful and inappropriate.
Some members required to undertake the Program are unable to properly participate in the Assessments scheduled for 27 January 2021 due to prior commitments and family responsibilities.
We have asked the MFS to urgently advise what will be done to ensure that members are not inappropriately disadvantaged by their need to attend to family responsibilities and as a consequence of commitments made prior to advice about when assessments would occur.
Members will be kept informed.