Friday, November 16, 2012

Protected Disclosure - is it time for somebody to blow the whistle ?

Most people we have met who work in the fire service 
(and that number increases on a daily basis)

 agree that 


So as in our previous post Employee Consultation    ......... we discuss the lack of transparency and consultation with "coal face" firefighters.

Very few people disagree with us - of course the Chief Fire Officer Simon Pilling does, he seems to view these proposed cuts in provision as positive - all we can think is that in the confines of his private office he wears rose tinted glasses + a pair of blinkers!  (which may be the reason he puts his assistants in the fire line instead of facing the public himself.) click HERE to read what Ed Balls MP said about him. 

Even one of his Assistant Chief Fire Officers agrees with us (or perhaps quite simply refused to lie to a parliamentary select committee). Martyn Redfearns appearance reported by the BBC is available HERE  and our article about the cuts is HERE - and aptly named If there are cuts - will people DIE

So how come ACO Redfearn told the truth - well in reality we will never know?  But lets make an educated guess...........

31st December 2012  its bye bye Martyn --- after 30 years service he will retire. So even if he was to be hauled over the coals it would in reality make no difference to him. And  in reality he is also covered by the


There is a law which allows an employee to "blow the whistle"

Whistleblowing is when a worker reports suspected wrongdoing at work. Officially this is called ‘making a disclosure in the public interest’.
A worker can report things that aren’t right, are illegal or if anyone at work is neglecting their duties, including:
  • someone’s health and safety is in danger
  • damage to the environment
  • a criminal offence
  • the company isn’t obeying the law (like not having the right insurance)
  • covering up wrongdoing

    So how do you blow the whistle .........?

    The way a worker can ‘blow the whistle’ on wrongdoing depends on whether they feel they can tell their employer.
    The worker should check their employment contract or ask human resources/personnel if their company has a whistleblowing procedure.

    If they feel they can, they should contact their employer about the issue they want to report

    If they can’t tell their employer, they should contact a ‘prescribed person or body’.

    A list of prescribed bodies is available HERE   


    there is also a charity called Public Concern at Work who can advise you. Their website is available HERE  

    PCAW can advise you and also have trained legal advisors who can help and guide you through the process (and will also talk through your concerns confidentially).

    So if your head is telling you something is wrong, and as we strongly suspect WYFRS are manipulating their figures - 


    use your head, put your hand on your heart

    and  do something about it.



    (and just in case you are interested IF you are proved by an employment tribunal to have been dismissed because  of a protected disclosure the compensation has no limit) 

    We here at FCCL have personal experience of WYFRS trying to silence us and we can only imagine what an ethical dilemma it will be for the fire fighter or other employee who is brave enough to  do this, but surely nobody reading this blog would disagree it is the responsible thing to do. 

    Fire fighters are brave people who do a dirty, dangerous job, but if these cuts go through it will get even more dangerous and WYFRS senior officers do most certainly know how to play dirty .................may be its time for a change.............................. 

    And of course as we at FCCL believe in transparency at some point when we are able we will tell you how WYFRS tried to 


    Anyway as usual if you would like to take part in the process of consultation  please see the details below. And if you would like to read what constitutes a "stakeholder" in the engagement process click HERE 

    TO send YOUR VIEWS on the proposed cuts in West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Provision 
    Click HERE  to view the consultation documents.

    You can also send your comments via snail mail to 
    Hannah Stoneman   or email her HERE
    West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue
    Oakroyd Hall
    Bradford Road
    West Yorkshire
    BD11 2DY


    Anonymous said...

    Do you genuinely expect any member of staff to go to the chief?

    But you are right it needs doing and soon.

    Sarah Covell said...

    Unfortunately WYF&RS cannot be trusted, they see everything as a case of them and us! They certainly wouldn't listen, The evidence is clear

    Sarah Covell said...

    And i would like to add when i have an opportunity to go public on the way some people have been treated i won't be blowing a whistle but blogging.

    But in the meantime FCCL may be public enemy number one but will carry on way way past the consultation deadline chipping away at the current farce that is WYFRS - at least we all believe in what we are doing. Can everybody at the top table of WYFRS say that -- i don't think so.