Union says fire crews relocating abroad due to cuts

Published:  10 Feb at 6 PM
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As reported by Herald, many of Ireland’s firefighters are moving overseas as pay and job prospects continue to get worse. About a dozen fire service personnel are believed to be hunting for work in Dubai, Canada, Australia and other countries, says a spokesperson for the Irish Fire and Emergency Services Association (IFESA).

John Kidd stated that firefighters, like other public service staff, feel dismayed by the deterioration in their salary and conditions under the Government's cutbacks. Firefighters are increasingly aware of the demand for their skills abroad. The fire service of Canada is recruiting for firefighter and paramedic posts. American cities such as Dallas (Texas) are also advertising very good employment to trained personnel.

The cost of training a firefighter is around €100,000, he said, adding that fire services seem very happy to hire workers who already have this expertise. He said there were also positions for trained paramedics and firefighters in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Mr Kidd, who is acting general secretary of the IFESA, requested that the Government seek a comparable debt repayment agreement to Greece in order to reduce the pressure on public finances. He added that firefighters and other public sector staff had experienced hits of up to 30pc in their salary and conditions.
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