An open letter to members from the Branch Secretary & Branch President on behalf of BCOM
On behalf of your President and Branch Committee of Management, I extend our deepest appreciation to all UFU Members and Professional Career Firefighters and their families (and canine friends!) who attended the UFU Rally today.
Your attendance demonstrated dedication and commitment to the cause of firefighter and community safety. We had members of every rank and all years of service in attendance.
Your message was loud and clear:
We have a fire service crisis in Victoria. Firefighters need the necessary equipment and resourcing to protect the communities that we serve.
FRV COMMISSIONER GAVIN FREEMAN HAS FAILED TO SUPPORT HIS EMPLOYEES/OUR MEMBERS AGAINST A PROPOSAL TO REMOVE YOUR CRITICAL SAFETY MECHANISMS IN YOUR ENTERPRISE AGREEMENT.
WE HAVE A GOVERNMENT WHO HAS NOT RESOURCED FIRE RESCUE VICTORIA TO ENSURE THAT FIREFIGHTERS HAVE THE NECESSARY EQUIPMENT & SAFE SYSTEMS OF WORK TO PROTECT THE COMMUNITY.
UFU members in force started at Eastern Hill FS01. Whilst UFU Members/Professional Firefighters were forced to rally to raise community awareness about the state of our fire service and yours and the community’s compromised safety, your Employer was upstairs looking down on you from the Level 2 Boardroom. Not one Executive Leadership Team member came down to support Firefighters today.
The UFU as one, in solidarity and commitment to firefighter and community safety, marched on to Parliament House steps. Today was a Parliamentary sitting day.
UFU Members/Professional Firefighters chanted “Symes has sold us out” as we approached the steps – because Minister Symes and the Victorian Government has ignored FRV’s Budget Bids urgently requiring new appliances, training facilities, and necessary firefighter resourcing. Minister Symes and the Victorian Government cannot keep ignoring Firefighters and the fire crisis that is impacting upon firefighter and community safety.
This was the SECOND RALLY of MANY. For as long as Firefighters and the Victorian community are under attack, UFU Members/Victoria’s professional firefighters will campaign to raise awareness.
There is no amount of Freeman’s scripted propaganda or the Government’s spin to deny the fire service crisis we are facing:
- FRV Firefighters are being forced to use outdated trucks that should be off the road. This is dangerous to Firefighters and the community because of the likelihood of truck failures
- FRV Firefighters are going into what is predicted to be the worst fire season since the 2019/2020 Black Summer with more than 59 fire appliances that are over 15 years old
- The Victorian Government will not resource Victorian communities such as Rosebud, Sunbury, Carlton, Geelong and Dandenong that FRV identified as requiring necessary resourcing
- FRV Firefighters are being pushed to the brink and being forced to respond to a rapidly growing population and an ever-increasing number of emergency incidents without the necessary, safe systems of work
Proud to be Union – Proud to be UFU