ON Monday 06/12/10 the PNA held a Press Conference to launch a new Front Line Union in which the PNA will provide membership to Fire Fighters and Ambulance Paramedics. The Sections representing the Fire Fighters will be the IFESA i.e. the Irish Fire and Emergency Services Association; while NASRA, the National Ambulance Service Representative Association will represent the Ambulance Paramedics.

‘We expect to have over 2500 new members on deduction for full membership within the next 6 weeks. Hundreds have already resigned their membership of other Unions.' States Des Kavanagh, General Secretary, who went on to say ‘ the huge transfer of members is being led by many who held leadership positions in the other Unions'.

John Kidd, former Convenor for Fire Fighters in Dublin County Council states ‘ In some places this development has been characterised as reflecting Fire Fighters dissatisfaction with the Croke Park deal. It is important to point out that our concerns are much deeper and can be traced back over many years when our reasonable Claims were not processed, when grievances were not represented, when the aspirations of Fire Fighters were repressed internally. We are thankful to the PNA for giving us the opportunity to represent our own concerns going forward. In establishing the IFESA we are joining our colleagues all over the World who independently represent the interests of Fire Fighters and indeed the Community we attain to protect and represent.'

We are pleased to facilitate the Fire Fighters and Paramedics in their efforts to independently represent their own interests and indeed the interests of the community at this time of austerity and cutbacks' , states Des Kavanagh, who continued ‘ This development brings together key groups of Front Line staff within one Union. We are committed to representing the many issues of common interest such as Premium Pay, Prevention of and Compensation for Injuries sustained in the course of our work and indeed those issues unique to each group'.

Derek O Rourke on behalf of the Ambulance Paramedics states : ‘ Our Paramedics are delighted to have this opportunity for independent representation of our concerns, some of which are pertinent to our grades while others are of importance to the general public. We believe we can only achieve the development our discipline deserves and the community needs through self representation, through NASRA'.

Representatives of PNA, NASRA and IFESA from various parts of the country are available for comment at

Des Kavanagh, PNA 087- 2313809

John Kidd, IFESA 087 - 6588999

Derek O' Rourke, NASRA 087 - 6702053

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