Firefighters to vote on strike action after rejecting five per cent pay offer

29 November 2022, 11:50 | Updated: 29 November 2022, 12:05

Firefighters latest group to vote on strike action
Firefighters latest group to vote on strike action. Picture: Alamy

By Stephen Rigley

Firefighters will start voting on strike action n the latest industrial dispute over below-inflation pay offers.

The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) said the "historic ballot" comes after its members rejected a five per cent increase to their wages.

The FBU said inflation currently stands at 11.1% and firefighters and control staff need a "substantial pay increase" to reflects the cost of living crisis.

Firefighters taking part in a nation strike over pensions in 2015
Firefighters taking part in a nation strike over pensions in 2015. Picture: Alamy

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Matt Wrack, the Fire Brigades Union general secretary, said: "This is an historic ballot for firefighters and control staff. We are rarely driven to these lengths.

"Nobody wants to be in this position. After years of derisory pay increases and a pay offer that is well below inflation firefighters' and control staff's living standards are in peril."

He added that firefighters are using foodbanks and "we know that because FBU officials have had to sign off on members going to them.

"Firefighters and control staff worked throughout the pandemic and firefighters took on extra duties including moving the deceased. They have now been given a below-inflation pay offer. It is utterly disgraceful to call people 'key workers' and then treat them like this."

Members will have from December 5 to January 30 to vote on whether to go on strike

It comes as the UK faces a wave of strikes this winter as workers from different industries are set to walk out over pay and conditions.

From transport to the NHS, education to delivery drivers, tens of thousands are expected to take industrial action as a recession grips the UK and the cost of living crises.