Strikes by firefighters have been postponed following an increased pay offer during lengthy talks with employers, it was announced on Thursday.
The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) said it had been offered a 7 per cent pay rise backdated to July 2022, and then 5 per cent from July this year.
The union had warned of strikes – but had not set a date – if a previous 5 per cent pay offer was not increased following a huge vote in favour of industrial action.
The union’s executive decided to put the new offer to a ballot of its members, and has postponed the announcement of strike dates pending the outcome.
The FBU said it will have an “honest and sober” discussion of the offer, adding it still amounts to a real-terms pay cut given the rate of inflation.
Matt Wrack, FBU general secretary, said: “This offer is testament to the power of collective action through the Fire Brigades Union.
“Last year we were offered an insulting 2 per cent. The employers have now revised their position.
“We have achieved this increase because of the massive vote in favour of strike action by firefighters and control staff across the country, which made clear the strength of feeling among firefighters about cuts to their wages.
“Since 2010, the average firefighter has lost at least 12 per cent of the value of their pay.
“We will now ballot our members. Frontline firefighters and control room staff will make the decision on whether this pay offer is considered a real improvement.
“Our internal discussions will be honest and sober.
“While the offer is improved from last year, it still amounts to a real-terms pay cut. Meanwhile, plans to announce a series of strike dates and industrial action will be postponed, pending the outcome of the ballot.”
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