Thursday, November 15, 2012

Employee Consultation

 (Taken from article dated 21st Sept 2004 – Yorkshire Evening Post)

We saw on a previous post that one particular group of Stakeholders are:-

Whilst senior management are also classed as Stakeholders, they are only a small minority, However it seems that whilst the cuts to front line services are acceptable, there is a definite lack of reduction in the posts of senior managers.

The two examples shown on the Stakeholder blog give these as the reasons as to why Directors (Senior Managers) as classed as such!

Directors and managers - Salary, share options, job satisfaction, status!

Managers who are concerned about their salary!

Therefore would it seem unreasonable to suggest that they, whilst they are the ones who are planning the cuts, they are not happy about cutting their own positions?


The Employees are made up of frontline firefighters and support staff.
There has been a drastic reduction in support staff already, Staff such as Station Clerks, Cooks, Fire safety, and others have gone over the last years.

But the proposals recommend a significant reduction both this year and next, of Firefighters.
But who better to give an honest opinion of what the cuts really mean to the public.
The Fire Service managers don’t want The Employees to comment; instead they would like them to keep their mouths shut, and follow the (Bad) Shepherd –Simon, and his Flock of Mis-Managers!


Employees are Stakeholders and are entitled to their opinions! 
They are Council Tax Payers too!

We at FCCL encourage them to make their objections known

Email Hannah Stoneman (HERE
(And don’t forget to copy in your MP, 
Local Councillor, 
Fire authority members, 
see the Contacts list for their E-mail addresses HERE

Or Write to her Here:-
Hannah Stoneman
West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue
Oakroyd Hall
Bradford Road
West Yorkshire
BD11 2DY

And if you live in KEIGHLEY -- after the sham of the last consultation meeting there have been TWO arranged and the details  are HERE


Joe O'Keeffe said...

Employees are very much "stakeholders", and as such they should not be deterred, nor censured in any way from giving their opinions in what is a life or death debate.

If the truth damages the position of the Government, the Fire Authority or Senior Management, then maybe they all need to re- examine their cuts agenda.

I have it on good authority, that one West Yorkshire Fire Station has been informed by management that it has reached it's monthly "allocated total" of deliberate fires, and that wherever possible the causes of these fires should be re-classified as unknown. Since when was there an allocated total of any kind of fire?

This just proves that statistics are being used to justify the cuts, and those statistics are not accurate.

The two meetings to be held in Keighley are a welcome step in the right direction, however yet again, the Keighley News has failed to publish the details of the said meetings. They have put them on their website, for those in Keighley who visit it.... approximately the same number who turned out to vote for a police commissioner!

Talking of which, I voted. The polling station had been open for 8 hours and 40 minutes when I cast my vote and I was the 10th voter of the day. We could have saved the county some money there, how much does it cost to run an election, to elect someone to a post that very few wanted in the first place?

If WYFRS wants to save money, and wants to provide best value etc etc, why not pay Fire fighters £8k per year less than a Police Constable? Forget that , I just checked and they already have that one covered. If I was in charge i would be highlighting that fact, informing the public of the excellent value they are getting and making sure they continued to get it.

The consultation document is not there to consult, it is there to confuse. It is up to those who know the facts to inform those who don't,

Attendance times in that document all apply to the FIRST appliance. We all know the importance of the SECOND appliance. The Home Office knew the importance of the SECOND appliance. One fire appliance with a crew of four can achieve very little at a persons reported house fire, only 200 gallons of water, fire hydrants that never get cleaned out and who knows when a back up pump will arrive.

They are the facts, and that is why there is no mention of when a second appliance will arrive at a very high risk life risk.

If the proposed cuts are sanctioned by the Fire Authority WE the residents of West Yorkshire will end up with a Fire Service that is not fit for purpose.

Shame on those who deny that with the use of tailored statistics.

Joe O'Keeffe said...

Talking of the opinions of employees and former employees.

I have stated before that at a meeting at Keighley Fire Station, the then Chief, Phil Toase said " the success of community fire safety (fitting smoke alarms) will not impact on jobs or fire cover"

It is interesting to see that he still disagrees with cuts to fire cover and response:

The Chairman of BAFE has written to the Fire Minister, Bob Neill MP, raising concerns over the variable response of FRSs to Automatic Fire Alarms
A number of Fire & Rescue Services have implemented changes to their responses to Automatic Fire Alarms, now offering limited or no response to alarms unless there has been some form of verification. This leaves commercial customers in a very difficult situation, especially out of normal working hours and they are calling into question the value of meeting their fire risk assessment requirements for AFAs.
Phil Toase CBE QFSM , the BAFE Chairman and a Past President of CFOA, states in the letter:
"We would urge you in conjunction with the Chief Fire and Rescue Adviser and the Director of Fire and Resilience to consider our very real concerns and subsequently encourage the return to an effective and consistent response to AFAs before there is a fire incident that results in tragedy. This would undoubtedly discredit the outstanding reputation of the Fire and Rescue Services with industry and commerce and of course the general public. I am sure you will appreciate that BAFE offers our full support and that of its membership to assist in the reduction of unwanted signals, whilst ensuring the best possible fire protection for property, premises and staff."
Information has also been sent to all of the more than 450 companies registered to the BAFE SP203-1 Fire Alarm scheme to encourage them to contact their local MPs and Fire Committee Chairs.

It is reassuring to read that the former Chief Fire Officer is concerned with how the Fire Service is compromising the safety of the public. He didn't get his CBE for nothing, take note Fire Authority members.

Bosshooch said...

Sorry but wasn't Phil Toase the WYFS Chief when these reductions to AFA's were first implemented?

Joe O'Keeffe said...

No he wasn't, he was the Chairman of BAFE (British Approvals for Fire Eqipment) and just to reiterate what the former Chair of the Chief Fire Officers Association said to the then Fire Minister Bob Neill

"We would urge you in conjunction with the Chief Fire and Rescue Adviser and the Director of Fire and Resilience to consider our very real concerns and subsequently encourage the return to an effective and consistent response to AFAs before there is a fire incident that results in tragedy. This would undoubtedly discredit the outstanding reputation of the Fire and Rescue Services with industry and commerce and of course the general public".

Not attending Automatic Fire Alarms is one way of reducing fire call statistics. It is obvious from his comments that Mr Toase was concerned with what Fire and Rescue Services are doing....


When I wrote to him for support this week he said;

"I am sure you will appreciate it would be entirely inappropriate for me to comment on the situation in West Yorkshire".

I am disappointed that professionals, those who know the dangers of reducing response times, those who know the importance of TWO appliances arriving at a house fire, will not stand up and be counted.

I would urge those professionals, those who have the knowledge to come out and tell the truth;


Sarah Covell said...

Well i hope Mr Toase is confident non of his family will ever need the services of the fire brigade.. Having lost a friend in a fire you cannot begin to understand the sheer torment it puts people through. Like i explained to Simon Pilling last year fire fighters children have it drummed into them how to escape if a fire breaks out. And to this day when i go somewhere new i always subconsciously hear my dad in my head asking me if there was a problem what would be the quickest way out. My children probably hear me in their heads saying the same.

In 1973 there was the Summerlands disaster - an accidental fire in which 50 people died including my godparents daughter Jane Tallon. Jane should have known what to do as she was the daughter of the assistant fire chief of the then Huddersfield Fire Brigade. I was 11 years old and saw and will never forget what that death did to her family and her friends. It doesn't just destroy people it destroys the lives of the people left behind. These cuts will eventually do the same to another family and i am not prepared to let that happen without one hell of a fight.

Joe O'Keeffe said...

The scrapped Regional Fire Control project cost the tax payer £469 million.

The FBU rejected the project, Fire Fighters rejected the project, yet those at the top knew best.

Those responsible, those who got rich on the back of that project should be held to account.

It shows that those with the "power" can get it very wrong, but like the bankers, no one is held responsible.

That £469 million would keep a lot of fire engines on the road.

How silly of me though, no one gets rich by providing good public services, only by destroying them.