Firefighters strike 'unavoidable'

A firefighters strike seems "unavoidable" in England and Wales in a row over pensions, the Fire Brigades Union has said.

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Government: Firefighters strike action not necessary

The Government does not believe that industrial action by firefighters is necessary in a row over pensions, Fire Minister Brandon Lewis said.

The Government does not believe that industrial action by firefighters is 'necessary'. Credit: Jeff Moore/Jeff Moore/Empics Entertainment

Mr Lewis continued: "The pension on offer to firefighters is one of the most generous in the public sector.

"After two years of discussions and improved terms firefighters will still get one of the most generous public service pensions available."

Union: 80% of firefighters vote in favour of strike action

Almost 80% of firefighters voted in favour of industrial action if no progress could be made in a row over pensions, the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) said.

FBU general secretary Matt Wrack said: "We have tried everything to avoid strike action being necessary.

The Fire Brigades Union said a strike in England and Wales seems 'unavoidable'. Credit: David Cheskin/PA Wire

"Although we are some way from an agreement, the Scottish Government's decision to engage positively with firefighters, offer improved proposals and not set any arbitrary deadlines for talks demonstrates that progress can be made through talks when both sides are willing.

"It's not too late to avoid a strike: the governments of England and Wales must see sense, put public safety first and come back to the negotiating table willing to compromise."

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Firefighters strike 'unavoidable' in England and Wales

A firefighters strike seems "unavoidable" in England and Wales in a row over pensions, the Fire Brigades Union has said.

The Fire Brigades Union said a strike in England and Wales seems 'unavoidable'. Credit: PA/PA Wire

Administrations in Westminster and Cardiff have "refused to reach a compromise" and an announcement of strike action is "likely to follow soon".

Revised proposals from the Scottish Government mean that industrial action may not proceed in Scotland, the union added.

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