[A-List] UK labour militancy & public order
michael.keaney at mbs.fi
Mon Dec 9 05:22:41 MST 2002
Police to investigate 'stalking' of fire union chief
The Herald, 6 December 2002
Police were called in last night to investigate claims that Andy Gilchrist,
the FBU general secretary, and his family had been stalked all day by
As a fresh attempt to end the firefighters' dispute began yesterday, Ruth
Winters, the union's president, said: "No attempt to smear Andy Gilchrist's
name will stop him from representing our members in this dispute.
"The union wholeheartedly condemns the actions of those who seek to
discredit and demonise our general secretary for representing his members.
"We will not stand by and allow Andy and his family to be stalked and
Police were contacted last week after hate mail was sent to Mr Gilchrist.
They confirmed they were investigating complaints made by Mr Gilchrist.
A Surrey police spokes-women said: "Surrey police have received a complaint
which we are investigating and we will be making inquiries with the
registered keepers of vehicles involved."
A fresh attempt to end the firefighters' dispute began yesterday with talks
between local authority employers and officials from Acas, the conciliation
Emerging from the two-hour meeting, Charles Nolda, chief executive of the
employers' organisation, admitted that reaching a deal "would not be easy"
and would take time.
Mr Nolda was one of three negotiators and an adviser who attended the
meeting on behalf of the employers.
He said the government provided most of the funding for local authorities,
so it was "realistic" to expect it to have an influence on the negotiations.
Negotiators said they believed the fire service should be modernised to
finance a pay rise of more than 4%.
Further meetings between Acas and the employers are expected, although no
dates have yet been fixed.
An Acas spokeswoman said: "These were just exploratory talks. They were very
much looking for a way to take the talks forward."
Reports claiming that a review of the fire service was recommending pay
rises of up to 40% were described as "completely inaccurate".
The review, chaired by Sir George Bain, will report its findings on December
16, the day the next strike is due to start.
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