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Dublin Fire Brigade to be balloted on strike action

Siptu says a lack of ambulances means firefighters are overworked and under-resourced.

Image: DFB/Twitter

TRADE UNION SIPTU is planning to ballot members of Dublin Fire Brigade on industrial and strike action.

The decision was made at a meeting yesterday and is in relation to a lack of ambulance resources.

Siptu represents about 800 members of DFB – the majority of employees.

A letter sent to Siptu members, and seen by TheJournal.ie, refers to a recent Hiqa review that requested Dublin City Council (DCC) “urgently identify and implement measures to address ambulance capacity issues in Dublin”.

It states that DFB management “subsequently identified a requirement for four additional resourced ambulances” – something Siptu says has not been provided.

The letter described the decision to ballot members on industrial action as “regrettable” but “the only option available”.

Overworked and under-resourced 

Speaking to TheJournal.ie today, Siptu sector organiser Brendan O’Brien said he believes funding is the main reason behind the additional ambulances not being provided.

As a result, our members who work in Dublin Fire Brigade are put under undue pressure to deliver a service which is under-resourced.

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“Anyone who has been brought to hospital by DFB this winter has seen how hard these guys work, they don’t stop. This is an unsustainable situation.”

O’Brien said it will take a few weeks to ballot members.

In a later statement, O’Brien added: “In December, senior management of Dublin City Council was informed by Siptu members that if the DFB was denied the resources necessary for it to achieve its Hiqa targets it would automatically trigger a ballot for industrial and strike action.”

A spokesperson for DCC said it has “no comment to make on this matter at the moment”.

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About the author:

Órla Ryan

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