After Years of Stagnation: New Collective Agreement Signed For Fire and Rescue Workers

May 19, 2022

Under the agreement, workers will receive a grant of thousands of shekels and a supplement for meals. Chairman of the Histadrut: “These thousands of dedicated workers today receive a real pat on the back and reward for the tremendous sacrifice for the benefit of the citizens of Israel.” 

The Histadrut, the National Fire and Rescue Authority, the workers’ representatives, and the Ministry of Finance signed today (Thursday) a collective agreement in the fire department. The agreement centers on a salary model tailored to firefighters who will move to key operational positions at the Fire Authority’s Headquarters and a grant of thousands of shekels per employee. 

Also in the agreement: an annual grant of NIS 3,800 per employee for meals, a supplement for moving from work in shifts to day work for Branch and Section commanders, as well as for employees who have moved due to work injury, a grant model based on meeting goals and outputs for staff and management. (This is to encourage employees to meet the goals of the Fire Authority and to improve productivity in the Fire Authority), and a permanent addition for the retirees who retired between 2019 and April 2022.

Histadrut Chairman Arnon Bar-David: “After difficult years in the fire brigade, during which the firefighters bravely faced many challenges in various arenas, today this important agreement is for them. The Fire and Rescue Authority employees, like others in the other rescue authorities in the country, carry on their shoulders a critical task. Not infrequently, this is done while risking life and out of a real sense of mission. This sacred doing teaches us all what mutual help is. I applaud the fact that thousands of these dedicated workers are now receiving a real pat on the back and a reward for the tremendous sacrifice they make during their daily work for the benefit of the citizens of Israel. I have been and remain committed to improving the working conditions of firefighters – with the understanding that this will be good not only for them but for all of us. I sincerely hope that the labor relations system in this important body will rise to the highway, not only for the sake of the Fire and Rescue Authority and its workers but for the benefit of the entire State of Israel. I want to thank all those involved in this agreement. Go forth and succeed”.

Commissioner for Wages at the Ministry of Finance Kobi Bar-Natan: “I welcome the agreement signed and thank all the partners who participated. This is a significant agreement that will improve productivity in the Fire Authority. We have formulated a new wage model for employees in key operational positions, which will help recruit skilled workers. Yes, it was agreed on a new wage model based on meeting goals and outputs in favor of improving the fire service for the citizen. “

UCAPSE chairman Gil Bar-Tal: “After a difficult period, we were able to break through the barriers to negotiations and reach an agreement. “This is an interim agreement and a sign of things to come for broader regulation of the salaries and rights of employees of the fire department, and negotiations for a comprehensive agreement will continue. A strong and stable fire service, with properly remunerated workers, is in the national interest.” 

Commissioner of Fire and Rescue, Chief Fire Officer Eyal Caspi: “I welcome a groundbreaking agreement that benefits firefighters and rescue workers imbued with a sense of mission and work with determination and sacrifice to save lives and property. Dedicated workers who deserve recognition and reward for their significant contribution to internal security and the perception of the national resilience of the State of Israel. We are amid an organizational and operational momentum that puts the fire brigade at the forefront of emergency services in Israel. We are all committed to the well-being of the workers, and together, while working together, we will continue to work to cultivate human capital in the system. “

Chairman of the Fire Brigade Workers’ Union, Avi Ankari: “I consider this agreement a tremendous achievement for firefighters. Thanks to the fact that there was respectful and dignified discourse and cooperation, we could bridge significant gaps, and we reached the signing status. I see a new way here and look forward to continuing to work with the new management. I thank the chairman of the Histadrut, Arnon Bar-David, who accompanied us all the way, the chairman of the UCAPSE, Gil Bar-Tal, who helps us around the clock, and Adv. Oz Goldberg, who does not leave us for a moment, breathes the fire brigade day and night and the secretariat of the workers’ organization.”

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