UNISON’S UNSUNG FIRE SERVICE SUPPORT STAFF COMPETE IN WORLD
FIREFIGHTERS GAMES & SHOW THAT WORKING FOR A FIRE BRIGADE ISN’T JUST
ABOUT FIGHTING FIRES
SPORTS enthusiasts across the world will turn their attention
from China to Liverpool...
For just as the 2008 Olympic Games close, the 2008 World
Firefighters Games begin.
Both uniformed and non-uniformed fire service workers across the
region will be flying the flag for the North West in the 67 event
Members of Britain and Europe’s biggest public sector union UNISON
will be among the competitors, including Greater Manchester Fire
Branch members Janice Pugh and Paul Warburton.
Janice, who chairs UNISON’s North West Regional Fire Forum, is
running the half-marathon on Tuesday, 26 August 2008 and Paul is
taking part in the 5K run the following week.
UNISON’s Regional Officer for fire service members, Mike Booth,
said:- “This is the 10th World Fire Fighters Games and is
being hosted by Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service.
It’s fitting that the games are being held in Liverpool in the
year that the city has been awarded the status of European Capital
The Games bring fire service personnel from across the world
together and enable UNISON members to show that working for a fire
brigade isn’t just about fighting fires.
Delivering a fire and rescue service is a team effort just like
hosting and taking part in a major sporting event. However,
the jobs UNISON members do such as paying the salaries and wages,
repairing the fire appliances, maintaining and cleaning the fire
stations are often unsung.
These Games give our members a chance to step into the limelight and
show they are an important part of the fire service team alongside
More than 5000 competitors will take part in the Games, which run
from 24 August to 3 September 2008.
As well as the many sporting events, there will be a full social and
family programme throughout with an Olympic Village in operation at
the new Liverpool Arena and Convention Centre on Liverpool’s
UNISON is hosting a stall at the event.
APPOINTS REGIONAL COUNCIL IN THE NORTH WEST
THE Learning and Skills Council (LSC) in the North West has
recently announced the appointment of 13 council members to form a
new Regional Council. Set up as part of the Further Education
and Training Act 2007, the new Regional Council will lead the LSC’s
regional and local presence; informing decision making, guiding
progress and ensuring the successful delivery of the LSC’s agenda in
the North West. The 13 council members will act as guiding
voices, translating national and regional strategy into practice and
effectively investing the LSC's budget over the next few years.
The Act was introduced to streamline the LSC’s ‘non-executive
tier’ following the replacement of 47 Local Councils with
the nine Regional Councils in existence today. This move has
resulted in a more simplified, less bureaucratic structure, as well
as being aligned to the organisation of the LSC executive team.
In this way, the new councils reflect both the local and regional
needs of learners and employers. Appointed members are
required to have a combination of business, education, training and
community experience in order to contribute to the balance of the
board. As a result of a successful recruitment drive earlier
this year, the LSC in the North West received a significant number
of applications for key positions on the Regional Council, including
those from many leading businessmen and women in the region.
The appointed council members all demonstrate a strong commitment to
learning and skills, and are from a diverse range of sectors and
backgrounds. The new council consists of representatives from
educational establishments, trade unions and from the public and
private sector. The same recruitment drive also the saw the
reappointment of Roger Hoyle on the 1 June 20008, as the Regional
Chair of the LSC in the North West. Congratulating the new
Regional Council members, LSC chair Chris Banks said:- “We
have a single aim; to improve the skills of the nation, and over the
next few years the LSC – supported by the new Regional Councils –
has a huge and important role to play. Our aim is to work with
the Further Education sector to ensure that we continue to respond
effectively to the changing needs of individual learners, employers
and wider communities, and to secure the skills we need to remain
competitive as a country. I am delighted that we have been
able to attract such a high calibre of membership to our new
Regional Councils from a wide range of sectors and backgrounds.
The Regional Councils will provide challenge, support and leadership
to the LSC’s work, and in doing so will help shape a world class
education and skills system for the North West region.”
Minister of State for Lifelong Learning, Further and Higher
Education, Bill Rammell, added:- “The Government is committed
to delivering the world class education and learning system that we
need if we are to compete effectively in a global economy. The
nine new Regional Councils will have a vital role to play in
ensuring that in all regions we have the skills needed to strengthen
our economic performance and to transform the ambitions and life
chances of millions of people.”