Election for Yorkshire and Humberside EC Member

This just in from the Brigade Secretary

ALL FBU MEMBERS

ELECTION FOR YORKSHIRE AND HUMBERSIDE EC MEMBER

Firstly let me apologise for such a long winded message, but within hours of the announcement that WYFBU are recommending Brother Steve Howley for Yorkshire and Humberside Regional EC member, someone who never had the courage to reveal their true identity, was castingdisparaging comments about the legitimacy of the Brigade Committee decision, something that I will not let go without challenging.

I’m always impressed when members or non-members from West Yorkshire (or other Brigades for that matter) take an interest in the outcomes from Brigade Committee meetings, there aren’t that many I can tell you. What impresses me more is when members or non-members from West Yorkshire (or other Brigades for that matter) TAKE AN INTEREST IN THE GOVERNANCE of the Committee, believe me there’s even fewer of those types of people, however an election between two candidates certainly draws them out especially when those individuals don’t agree with that Brigade Committee’s democratic decision. So specifically for “JOHN SHAW” (whoever you may be) and others who may be interested, let me explain a little about the Governance of WYFBU Brigade Committee.

1) The Brigade Committee meet the first Thursday of every month.

2) The Brigade Committee is made up of representatives from the 5 local authorities or Divisions (Div Reps of which there can be 2) and sectional reps, some with a vote, some sections don’t. There is a very good reason why WYFBU run this structure and that is because it’s much, much easier to be quorate (for a vote) than running the Branch structure which other Brigades do in our region and I suspect further afield. Under the Branch structure, if a Brigade has 35 branches, then that Brigade Committee would need 18 of those reps to attend to be quorate (50%+ 1), this is incredibly challenging and could mean that any vote taken wouldn’t be legitimate.

3) The Brigade Committee invite the Regional Officials to every meeting.

4) The Brigade Committee also invite ALL WYFBU MEMBERS to attend in an observational capacity, this is something I instigated 7 years ago when I became the Brigade Secretary.

5) None of the members, reps or officials, West Yorkshire or Regionally are compelled to attend.

6) Minutes are taken at EVERY meeting and agreed at the following meeting. These minutes are freely available to read, but understandably not made public.

Unfortunately, due to the Brigade Organiser and myself being required to attend a National meeting in Newcastle on the 1st March the Brigade Committee was postponed until the following Thursday.

Thursday 8th arrived amidst another massive snow fall which meant that some members of the Committee couldn’t attend, but let me be clear about the following points:

1) The meeting did go ahead, in fact in went ahead at Rothwell fire station because there was no-one in the Regional Office.

2) The meeting WAS quorate, with 60% of the Divisions represented and 50% of the voting sections, it is worth noting here that I do not get a vote and the Chair (or vice Chair in this instance) only gets the casting vote.

3) That vote was carried UNANIMOUSLY.

4) No Regional Officials attended.

5) Minutes are already typed up ready for ratification at the next Brigade Committee on the 5th April.

Regarding JOHN SHAW and his mischief making (if in fact John is a he) I will say;

I WILL NOT accept criticism about the legitimacy of the Brigade Committee from any individual who acts anonymously, MEMBER OR NOT.

I WILL NOT accept criticism about the legitimacy of the Brigade Committee from any non-member.

I WILL NOT accept criticism from any other member, rep or official from any other Brigade who perhaps do not have “their own house in order” regarding the Governance of their respective Committee’s.

I WILL gladly accept criticism from any member in any Brigade, where it’s factually correct and legitimately raised.

I will finish by saying that those who are out to publicly denigrate the Brigade Committee’s decisions using untruths and lies will become our enemy, there are legitimate means of raising concerns and the Committee are completely open and transparent. I would expect though until these cowards who hide behind pseudonyms have the courage to speak openly we may see more of these sorts of attacks in the future, or until the end of the EC election anyway.

So let me be absolutely clear;

On the 8th March 2018 at Rothwell Fire Station, West Yorkshire FBU UNANIMOUSLY voted to recommend Brother Steve Howley. This meeting was quorate, despite the horrible weather conditions and the minutes WILL be available to any member wanting to view them after ratification on the 5th April 2018.

Yours in unity,

Dave Williams

WYFBU Brigade Secretary

Posted in Elections

ELECTION FOR YORKSHIRE AND HUMBERSIDE EC MEMBER

ALL FBU MEMBERS

ELECTION FOR YORKSHIRE AND HUMBERSIDE EC MEMBER

You will shortly or already have received a ballot paper for the above election to your home addresses.

There are just two candidates standing, Brother Pete Smith and Brother Steve Howley.

We can confirm that the West Yorkshire Brigade Committee voted to recommend Brother Steve Howley for the position.

Ballot papers should be returned in the pre paid envelope provided no later than 14:00 on the 20th April, if you have failed to receive one, misplaced or lost it, please speak to the Brigade Secretary as quickly as possible.

Yours in unity

West Yorkshire FBU

Posted in Elections

Get your MP to sign EDM 1115 to mark Firefighters’ Memorial Day 2018

Laid by former firefighter Jim Fitzpatrick MP, EDM 1115 – Firefighters’ Memorial Day, 4 May 2018 calls on Parliamentarians to stand with fire crews at their nearest fire station to observe the minute’s silence at Midday.

Alternatively, they can join members of the Firefighters’ Memorial Trust and the FBU at the Firefighters’ Memorial at St Paul’s Cathedral.

Members should write to their local MP or use the template letter below urging their support for EDM 1115.

MPs often prefer personal letters from constituents so feel free to add some information local to you and your MP; such as the name of your local fire station or your own involvement with the fire and rescue service.

To email your MP simply go to www.writetothem.com, enter your postcode, click on the link to your MP and then copy and paste your lobby letter into the email and add your details.

 

Template letter

Dear

I ask you to kindly add your name to Early Day Motion 1115 in support of Firefighters Memorial Day, Friday 4th May 2018. Please also be invited to stand at midday on 4th May with your firefighters in observing a minute’s silence in honour of the bravery and sacrifice of fallen firefighters. Since records began 2,524 members of the fire and rescue service have died whilst protecting the public. You would be welcome to stand with us at one of the fire stations in your constituency or at The Firefighters Memorial, Carter Lane, near St Pauls Cathedral, with members of the Firefighters’ Memorial Trust and the Fire Brigades Union.

Thank you.

Early Day Motion 1115 – Firefighters Memorial Day, 4 May 2018

That this House joins with firefighters across the UK on Firefighters’ Memorial Day, on 4 May 2018, remembering the bravery and sacrifice of the 2,524 colleagues who have lost their life in the line of duty; extends its sympathies, especially on this memorial day, to all the bereaved families of fallen firefighters; acknowledges the good work of the Firefighters’ Memorial Trust in remembering and honouring all firefighters who have lost their life while serving humanity and recording their names on The Firefighters’ Memorial located close to St Paul’s Cathedral in London; applauds the commitment and selfless dedication of all UK firefighters who stand ready today and every day to risk their life to save others and protect their local communities from the consequences of fire, floods, terror attacks and numerous other emergency situations; and calls on Members of both Houses to join members of the Firefighters’ Memorial Trust and the Fire Brigades Union at the Firefighters’ Memorial, St Paul’s or to stand with firefighters at their nearest fire station to observe the minute silence at midday on 4 May 2018.

Posted in Politics

North Yorkshire FBU update on industrial action

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Posted in Industrial Action

FBU statement on Kerslake report into the Manchester bombing

The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) welcomes the publication of the Kerslake report into the Manchester bombing. There are hard lessons for all emergency services to learn in the report.

 

The FBU has been considering the implications of what happened on the night and will review those in the light of the report. The FBU looks forward to early discussions with the appropriate parties including: the national fire service employers; the national fire chief’s council and the Home Office to discuss the issues outlined.

 

The FBU also looks forward to discussions with relevant parties in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland.

 

Andy Dark, FBU assistant general secretary, said:

 

“The report has some important lessons for the fire service and for all emergency services. It raises important questions on the issue of communications that are central to the criticisms made of the fire service not least the impact of Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service being the only emergency service in Manchester without its own dedicated service control room.

 

“A major cause of the problems encountered was the absence of any information being received by the fire service from the police. The wider issue of course is that government requires only small teams of firefighters to be trained and equipped for such incidents. There is currently a dialogue with the Home Office on the issue of funding for these arrangements.

 

“The FBU will be addressing these matters with vigour to find solutions to the problems identified in order to ensure that the fire service is prepared for such events in the future.”

Posted in Uncategorized

NHS under ATTACK

11.30am 14th April 2018 Leeds

March to save our NHS

Posted in Politics, Trade Unions

Region 4 EC Member Election

This just in from the Brigade Secretary

Members will be receiving, or have already received, a circular from Head Office stating that Yorkshire and Humberside are about to enter into a ballot for the most senior post of the Union in our region and that is of Executive Council member.
I want to personally thank the Brigade Committee and those branches who nominated me for that post, I’m incredibly flattered to have received so many nominations and unless you’ve been in that position you won’t realise just how humbled I feel by your continuing support.
Unfortunately, currently, I’m not in a position to accept those nominations.
Many thanks once again, and I look forward to representing you all in West Yorkshire for the foreseeable future.

Yours in unity

Dave
David Williams
WYFBU Brigade Secretary

Posted in Elections

LGBT National Sectional Secretary

Congratulations to Brother Patrick Carberry who has been re-elected as LGBT National Sectional Secretary.

Together we’ll continue to make the fire service a safe inclusive place for everyone to be themselves.

For confidential advice & support contact
LGBT Rep Maggie Meszaros 07944290969 maggie.meszaros@fbu.org.uk or
Fairness at Work Officer Dave Gillian 07837827657 dave.gillian@fbu.org.uk

Posted in Diversity

HISTORIC EDITIONS OF FIREFIGHTER MAGAZINE MADE AVAILABLE ONLINE FOR FIRST TIME

Today, as part of the Fire Brigades Union’s (FBU) centenary celebrations, all surviving issues of Firefighter magazine dating back to 1932 are being made available to browse online in what is believed to be a first for a UK trade union.

The union’s journal gives a priceless insight into the development of the fire service and its trade union through the 20th century. Major events including the Second World War, the Blitz and the first ever national firefighters strike are covered in detail as are fatal incidents such as the Cheapside fire in Glasgow. The blaze, which happened 58 years ago this month, resulted in the deaths of 19 firefighters and salvage corps members.

The archives run up to 2001 by which time the FBU had begun posting the magazine online. The last issue in the archive – the September/October 2001 edition – includes the FBU’s commentary on the aftermath of the September 11 attacks in New York, in which 343 of the 414 emergency workers who died were firefighters.

Matt Wrack, general secretary of the FBU, said: “The FBU has a rich and engrossing history. We hope readers will find it an illuminating journey about how their fire and rescue service has developed over the past 100 years and the essential role the FBU has played in that.

“It is quite frankly amazing that a small industrial union like ours has been able to regularly publish a high quality journal for the best part of a century. Firefighter is one of the oldest, continually running fire service publications in the world and gives an essential insight to a profession that has responded to some of the most devastating events in UK history.”

It took the Modern Records Centre at Warwick University over a year to digitise the large collection which is being released to the public as part of celebrations to mark 100 years since the union, then known as the Firemen’s Trade Union, was founded on 1 October 1918.

Rebecca Jones, of the Modern Records Centre at Warwick University, said: “This was a great project to work on; my father is a retired firefighter from Leicestershire so it was of great personal interest to myself. By digitalising all the past issues of Firefighter, readers will be able to easily search for topics that interest them. I found it poignant that the collection ends with 9/11, and the articles on the effect of television on the 1955 general election were fascinating.”

The online archive can be accessed at: https://wdc.contentdm.oclc.org/digital/collection/fbu

Posted in Uncategorized

Brigade Chair Election

This just in from the Brigade Secretary

ALL MEMBERS

As you may be aware we have started a ballot for the FBU Brigade Chairs election.

As with the last 2 elections we have had lots of interest in taking the role on.

4 years ago the ballot was between John Iveson and Paul Drinkwater (John reluctantly couldn’t go to a full election at that time).

2 years ago the ballot was between Paul Drinkwater and Louise Connell (which resulted in 80% voting and was won by less than 50 votes).

This year WYFBU are incredibly lucky to have another 2 outstanding candidates seeking to take it on, they are Martyn Bairstow and Mick Loney.

I’m asking that you fully engage once again in this democratic process, ballot papers should be landing on station now and although the ballot closes on the 6th April, I imagine they will start to be collected from the 2nd April, so please vote early.

For our members at FSHQ, I have your ballot paper in my office ready for collection. If there any questions please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Yours in unity,

Dave

David Williams
WYFBU Brigade Secretary

For those members who don’t recognise the names of either candidate, here’s a few photos, Martyn first, then Mick.

Posted in Elections