National Update

National Bulletin - August 2021

Fire and Rescue Consultative Forum

Last month the FRSA attended the Fire and Rescue Consultative Forum (Wales) for the first time. The purpose of the forum is to discuss developments to support the delivery of the Fire and Rescue National Framework (2016), including:

      • Policy development by the Welsh Government.
      • FRA programmes aimed at delivering the Framework, and updates on progress.
      • Barriers to delivery and potential solutions.

The Forum provides advice to the Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Children on any aspect which it feels affects the effectiveness of FRAs and the safety of Welsh communities. 

By expanding the membership of the forum to us and the Fire Officers’ Association, it demonstrates that the government is keen to hear the views of all representative bodies, not just the largest union. This is a positive step and we welcome the opportunity to play a key role in pushing forward the views of our members in all three services in Wales.

Raising Awareness

Now that restrictions are slowly being lifted by the government, we are receiving more invitations to speak to new recruits and station crews, making all fire service personnel aware of the FRSA and the benefits of membership.

If you would like an informal conversation of what the FRSA has to offer you, contact us via [email protected] or any of our social media channels. Communications can be given face-to-face or via video.

Modified Pension Scheme

To ensure that you are aware of the latest situation regarding negotiations for the second options exercise to join / backdate further the Modified Pension Scheme, I can confirm that there is no further update that is available. We have yet to reconvene a joint meeting, but discussions have taken place electronically which appear to be positive.

It would be unwise to provide any further information at this juncture, patience as they say is a virtue and I will provide an update on developments in the next bulletin unless notable information becomes available beforehand.

Fire Standards Board - Prevention

The Fire Standards Board (FSB) last week announced the launch of its seventh professional Fire Standard – Prevention.

Alongside the Protection Fire Standard, which is due for publication in early September, this sees completion of Fire Standards covering the three pillars of service delivery for fire and rescue services – Operational Response, Prevention and Protection.

With Prevention specifically, and in response to the findings from Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS), targeting the right people; having consistency in the approach taken; and evaluating their Prevention activities, are key to improving the health, safety and wellbeing of communities.

The Prevention Fire Standard is underpinned by the work of the National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) Prevention Programme, whose work on the Person-Centred Approach and other guidance and tools will be pivotal to supporting services in future.

A Fire Standard focussed on Resilience and Emergency Planning is part of the next phase of standards development. Other Fire Standards in development include;

      • Safeguarding;
      • Fire Investigation;
      • Leadership standards covering Service Leadership, Developing Leaders and Service Management; and
      • Data Management.

The next Fire Standard due for publication in early September is Protection. Others in development include the first of a suite of leadership Fire Standards – the Well-Led Service Fire Standard. Work is also at an early stage of development for Safeguarding and Fire Investigation with standards addressing Emergency Planning and Resilience and Data Management being started later this year.

Represent the FRSA in your service

We are always willing to hear from members who are interested in joining our network of local officials that represent members within their own fire and rescue service. The contribution these officials make can literally be life-changing for members and is a very rewarding role which attracts payment for trade union duties. Training is provided by the Association and a mentoring arrangement is available, although the key attribute is your experience as an operational firefighter!

If you would like to know more, please contact FRSA HQ via 01953 455005 or [email protected].

Our offer to you

A new information leaflet is available encapsulating the key benefits of being a member of the FRSA. The document is available via our website and we would recommend that this is shared with your colleagues on station.