The Auckland Local Committee is determined to win the reinstatement of SSO Devoe and SFF Waldow, seeing them returned to their elected positions.

We have laid a formal complaint about the numerous alleged Rule breaches committed by the National Committee and its President, and as per the Rules of our Union; we have no other course of action open to us other than through the National Conference. To this end, I believe we have the support of other Locals around the country to pursue this action, with these other Locals sharing our concerns over the decision itself and the lack of due process.

In addition, we have asked for an impartial panel to hear the arguments we raised and to make a determination. There is no Rule for this to happen, however, the National Committee has indicated that they are open to this action. It does come down to both parties agreeing to abide by and accept the decision of the panel. We will be discussing the makeup of this panel and what it should look like on the 16th and hope to bring you an outcome to this discussion on 23 November.

The Local Committee fully supports and will assist, where ever we can, with Sulu and John’s case. As I am sure you will understand, this matter is now before the Courts, meaning we have little influence on the outcome of the case, however, I assure you the Local Committee resolutely supports the reinstatement of both Sulu and John.

A month ago I was asked to take on the role of Acting Local President. I was extremely torn and hesitant in assuming the position, however, I did so on the understanding that I would step down immediately Sulu was reinstated.

To members who say we shouldn’t engage with the National Committee, I can and do understand your feelings, but there is a bigger picture here, and that is the 600 odd other members here in the Auckland Local.

At Ratification it was argued that there wasn’t anything for Aucklanders in the proposed offer, hence our refusal to endorse Ratification. Within the proposed CEA was an undertaking to form an Auckland Working Group looking at the unique circumstances our members in Auckland face.We have now engaged and asked members to support this work.As a result of this we have had 15 applications from our Local to contribute to this project. I stand by this decision to participate and carry out this work as this is our opportunity to get something, not only for us, but potentially all firefighters moving forward.

This is a time of transition and change; decisions need to be made that will affect firefighters, not just for now, but for generations to come. We are very mindful that to ensure that we get a say in what that future will look like, we need to operate in a professional and open manner. Sometimes this will mean conversations and engagement with the very National Committee whose minds we hope to change.

I am not prepared to stick my head in the sand and pretend the world will stop and wait for the Courts to decide. We will have missed a one off opportunity to have a positive impact on our lives next contract round and into the future.

We have a strong committee with some experienced people who are determined to get it right.

As always, if you have any concerns or queries, contact one of our Local Committee members.


James Hall 
President (Acting) 
Auckland Local 

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