Labour supports retained firefighters industrial action

13 June 2023

Labour workers’ rights spokesperson Marie Sherlock said it is appalling that retained firefighters have been forced into strike action today to ensure a safer service in their community.

Senator Sherlock said:

“On behalf of the Labour Party I want to express our solidarity to all retained firefighters on strike today. It’s shameful that it has come to this given the Minister has had a report into their concerns for months now. The strike action today is fundamentally about respect.

“A lot is riding on the statement anticipated by Minister O’Brien today. It’s time for him and his Government colleagues to take these workers’ concerns seriously.

“Pay and conditions need to be resolved here. Loose commitments by fire service management to recruit more will simply not cut the mustard.

“Successive Ministers and officials in Custom House has had their heads in the sand over many years which has brought us to this dire recruitment and retention crisis.

“It’s time to address head on the reasons for falling recruitment such as the restrictive working conditions, the fall in pay due to the reduction in call outs and the difficulty workers are having in taking annual leave.

“It’s an unacceptable way to treat any worker. We await Minister O’Brien’s statement today. These people literally put their lives on the line for us. They deserve decent pay and conditions.”

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