Celebrating 40+ years of women career firefighters


The NZPFU is hosting an event to celebrate 40 plus years of women career firefighters with special  tributes to Anne Barry and Elizabeth England who were the first women career firefighters in New Zealand and the Commonwealth.  Anne Barry battled for the right to transition from the communications call centre to career firefighting taking her case to the Human Rights Commission, the Equal Opportunities Commission and to Parliament before finally being accepted in 1981 on the career recruits course with Elizabeth England.

The planned 40th anniversary celebrations have been postponed a couple of times due to Covid-19 pandemic restrictions but we can now confirm the event is going ahead.  Anne Barry will be at the celebration and will be joined by members of Elizabeth England’s family as Elizabeth is not well enough to attend.  

Past and present NZPFU members who have a particular interest in celebrating 40 years of women career firefighters are welcome to join us.  Please register your attendance by emailing wellington@nzpfu.org.nz for venue and catering purposes.

WHEN:                  2pm -5pm  Tuesday 11 July 2023
WHERE:                Mount Maunganui  Surf Lifesaving Club

Fire and Emergency is supporting this event by providing funding opportunities for those who wish to attend.  Those interested in applying for financial support for expenses related to travel can do so by sending an email to women@fireandemergency.nz outlining why this event is meaningful for them, and the amount they need support with to make their attendance possible.  Expressions of interest need to be submitted by Friday, June 23rd 2023.  As funding is limited, support will be allocated on a first in basis.

In unity,
Wattie Watson
National Secretary

Related Articles



Due to the recent resignation of the Taupo Local Secretary, nominations are hereby called for this position in accordance with the Rules of the New Zealand Professional Firefighters Union.

Election of Northcom Representative - Auckland Local Committee

By the closing date for nominations for the position of Northcom Representative – Auckland Local Committee, the following nomination has been received.

Blood Screening and Health Checks now available for Wellington Local Members

The Wellington Local are pleased to announce members can now book Blood Screening and Health Checks by agreement with 2 providers. The local has been working very hard to find providers to undertake these comprehensive and potentially life-saving checks for our members.