INDEPENDENT NEWS

Put up or shut up - Dame Margaret

Published: Tue 3 Aug 1999 10:38 AM
Labour internal affairs spokesperson Trevor Mallard has expressed his sorrow at the approach used by the chair of the Fire Service Commission Dame Margaret Bazley.
"Dame Margaret has made a series of allegations by way of memo without any substantiation whatsoever. It is quite clear that any such allegations, if there was substance, would have been made to the police and followed up," Trevor Mallard said.
"I had hoped that Roger Estall's sacking and Dame Margaret's new approach to the Commission would have resulted in a more positive outcome and I hope that the Commission can now focus on the industrial relations issue at hand.
"It is Labour's view that there should be one collective agreement for all paid fire fighters, and that there is an urgent need for recruitment of new staff.
"I do not expect that the structural issues in the fire service, including the number of fire fighters on trucks, will be solved as part of the current negotiations. But I believe that the legal action can be disposed of as part of the process.
"Labour is committed to a modern efficient fire service and has always made it clear that there should be a minimum of four fire fighters on a standard fire fighting appliance," Trevor Mallard said.

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