Fire Safety Officers

Newsletter No. 1 outlined the state of play with the restructure of Fire Safety.

No reply has been received to our letter of 14 January 09 as published in that Newsletter. The Union has been advised however by the Fire Service, that the Fire Service is working on a reply. The Fire Service has accepted that the Union’s letter raises legitimate issues – including those relating to training/education programme.

The Fire Service has also indicated that they can accept that until these issues are settled, existing Fire Safety Officers could reasonably not express an interest in the new positions.

The Union has no doubt that if and when outstanding issues are satisfactorily resolved, the Fire Service will be happy at that date to accept expressions of interest.

The Union’s recommendation to Fire Safety staff is to wait until satisfactory resolution before deciding whether to express such an interest.

The Union notes the clear advice that until and unless an existing Fire Safety Officer expresses an interest in a new position, they continue as normal in their existing positions.

Acting Up Into Executive Officer Positions

From time to time because of a temporary Executive Officer vacancy, opportunities are offered to Officers to act up into that vacancy. The Union has no objection in principle to such acting up.

However, for any acting up to occur, an individual variation to the Collective Agreement must be agreed - i.e. to provide the appropriate conditions of employment.

As well, there is often issues regarding the reason for the need for acting up, duration of the period, how selection is made, need to maintain M.S.M.

The Union has written to the Fire Service proposing discussions to attempt to achieve at least standardised guidelines regarding all the issues that arise out of such acting up.

Such guidelines, including a template for the necessary individual variations to the C.A. should greatly assist Locals and Local Management when a need for acting up arises.

Volunteer Support Officers

The Union and the Fire Service are addressing the issue of the translation of existing V.S.Os onto Part 4 of the C.A.

It is obvious that problems are related to the pay translation of those V.S.Os with an operational background.

The Union’s position is that pay rates in Part 4 for V.S.Os with an operational background need to be aligned to those rates for F.S.O. and Training Officers with a similar operational background. This is what the Union is pursuing in Collective Agreement negotiations.

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