221 firefighter positions cut since Grenfell


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The Fire Brigades Union has revealed that 221 firefighter positions have been cut since Grenfell, as the fifth anniversary of the fire takes place on 14 June. 

At the headcount performed closest to Grenfell itself – on 31 March 2017 – there was a total of 48,338 fulltime, on-call and fire control staff. On that same date four years later (2021), the most recent update, that total had dipped to 48,117.

These figures are taken from Home Office and respective home nation sources, and relate to headcounts on 31 March of each year. Firefighters are defined to include fire control staff.

Matt Wrack, Fire Brigades Union general secretary, said: “Despite the worst UK domestic fire in living memory the government is still failing to change direction, and take fire safety and the fire service seriously. It is an insult to the people who lost their lives and it is an insult to the Grenfell community. 

“Unfortunately none of this is a surprise. Central government let Grenfell be turned into a fire trap and has done nothing to fix the building safety crisis that has come to light since. But nonetheless, we should not take our eye off just how heartless you have to be to see an incident like Grenfell and then continue on a path like this. They are gambling with lives.”

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