London firefighters hired with just '12 days of training' during strikes

Published date30 June 2022
Publication titleMyLondon (England)
It would seem Westminster is bracing itself for strikes in the fire service with preparation measures already underway. Securitas, a safety company which provides contingency fire crews when numbers are reduced, for example during a pandemic or strike action, posted a job advert on around a fortnight ago

The openings included general firefighters and even a crew supervisor whose role is to lead the team when attending incidents. Normally, fire fighters are required to complete at least four months of training and crew supervisors will have five to 10 years experience.

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However, the advert said these temporary crews and supervisors will both only have to do a 12-day residential training programme before they can put out real fires. No specific experience of working in the fire service or operating fire appliances is stipulated by the recruitment ad for either role.

Instead, it seeks people with “great communication skills” who are “comfortable working away from home” and can “deal with life-threatening situations calmly and professionally”. Current fire fighters have expressed anger at what they believe is a clear “anti union” move from the government.

"It's very frustrating and disappointing that these guys will be coming into our jobs with only 12 days training and most if not all won't have any frontline experience" a fire fighter, who wishes to remain anonymous, said. "We are continually doing core skills and our experience must count for something. This is a public safety issue: how can it be lawful for them to take our place."

Especially after lessons learned from Grenfell, The Fire Brigade Union agree that the Government are risking public safety by recruiting inexperienced...

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