‐ Approximately 40‐45% of members’ houses have been severely affected – damage ranges from moderate to total destruction.

‐ Welfare Team established which includes Jim Ryburn – Southern Branch Secretary

If not for the Union, Fire Service would have no or little ability to respond/assist.

Although the Union does not dwell or live in the past, members should remember (particularly members not around at the time) that the attitude of the Fire Service (under Roger Estall) in the 1990s to cut costs/reduce firefighter numbers, was based on the concept that the Fire Service should only be concerned with fire. If the Fire Service only focused on fire, then not as many firefighters would be needed and costs could be cut.

The Fire Service certainly would not be anything like a Fire & Rescue Service – even M.V.As would not be responded to by the Fire Service.

The Union’s fight in the 1990s directly protected the Fire Service’s rescue role, and members need to appreciate that we were the only one undertaking that fight.

What also should be remembered is that many (not all) of the present operational senior managers accepted, endorsed and advocated the concept of the Fire Service’s sole focus on fire. No doubt they have forgotten that and are now happy to “lead” the rescue response.

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