Essex Fire Chiefs remain confident that the need for strike action can be averted, despite the announcement from the FBU of five strike dates.
Chief Fire Officer David Johnson says that talks with ACAS will go ahead on Monday and he hopes that union officials will accept the offer from senior managers to attend with whatever representation they need or want.
The strike dates set are: June 28, 10:00-18:00 hrs; July 7, 04:00-05:00 hrs (the day of the torch relay in Essex); July 18 at 09:00 hrs to July 19 at 09:00 hrs, August 18 at 17:00-19:00 hrs; October 18 at 11:00-16:00 hrs.
Only yesterday, CFO Johnson went on record to reassure the public that ECFRS had resilient contingency plans to protect the communities of Essex during any periods of strike action.
More than 100 ECFRS firefighters have signed resilience contracts guaranteeing their availability to provide cover during any periods of staff shortage and many of the Service’s retained stations have indicated that they will continue to provide life saving cover during periods of strike action.