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Reserve Firefighters

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I stumbled across the role of ‘reserve firefighter’ for Derbyshire FRS today and after a quick google I see Avon FRS is also advertising for the same role. Training is provided and then you are placed on a zero hour contract ready to cover industrial action as necessary. I know this has been in place for some time externally (e.g. EFCC) but I have never seen the role offered through FRS’s directly. Have I been living under a rock or is this a new initiative to cover the potential upcoming industrial action? Either way it doesn’t seem right to me if this is the way forward nationally. Anybody else have any thoughts on this?

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Fire services have a legal obligation to provide fire cover in the event of industrial action. This could be ways such reliance on non union/retained staff, training if officers, employing outside agencies to provide crews or in this case just employ them directly ( couldnt tell you who picks up the bill though ) I believe Avon and GMC have had similar programs with contingency crews

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I knew of the legal requirement for resilience but had always assumed it to be a case of trying to cover it in-house and if unsuccessful, utilise the external agency. I’ve never come across employing specifically for this purpose so it’s interesting to know it’s not a new thing, thanks. It still seems strange to me though, but presumably the two worlds never cross e.g. sharing refresher courses.

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I understand that FRS have a duty to provide cover if we go out, but it does hurt that some services are offering reserve crews more than I'd get paid on overtime, and they are defensive only. 

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pretty sure london out source it to some security conglomerate, securitas maybe? although one very senior officer has recently been visiting stations attempting to recruit strike breakers, apparently the chief intervened and he is no longer doing this. traditionally, last few strikes, any station based non strikers, have not been made to ride with resilience crews, he was suggesting this would not be the case this time round. 

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