We know that we work most safely and effectively when we are a
strong team. So it’s not a coincidence that we have been at the forefront of
delivering equality and inclusion in the fire service since that first strategy
twenty-one years ago.
A lot has changed since the first strategy was produced and London Fire Brigade has continued to work on inclusion and diversity in the workplace.
The Safer Together strategies aims and actions include:
• tackling all forms of discrimination by managing poor behaviour and signposting help for staff across the service
• tackling unconscious bias by targeted training and development and improving the consistency and standard of assessors and hiring managers
• developing inclusive teams
• promoting diversity
• improving diversity and inclusion at fire stations.
A land of opportunity, that’s what I think firefighting gives me. My job has given me opportunities I could have only dreamt about. As a child growing up in South London, I could never have imagined that one day I would be in 10 Downing Street shaking hands with the Prime Minster. But it did happen, and it happened to me.
Being a firefighter has given me the opportunity to volunteer for excellent initiatives both inside and outside the Brigade. For the past three years I’ve been attending, and encouraging more black and minority ethnic people and women to consider the fire service as a career. Talking to people about how passionate I am about the fire service is easy, and something I really enjoy.
Firefighter, Richard Reid
Knowing I work for the most gay friendly fire service in the country makes me proud to come into work every day. When I joined the Brigade 13 years ago I felt able to come out. The very fact that everyone knows I’m gay, but I’ve still progressed to become a station manager at Southwark Fire Station shows that it’s not an issue for people here.
It’s so important for me to be myself at work. I hope I am a role model not only to firefighters who want to come out within the service but to gay people who would like to have this as a career. I know that it can be difficult for some people to be open at their place of work and for quite a few people who have heard my story say ‘wow it’s great you feel you can be that out’. It’s a great place to work.
Station Manager, Cathie Reeve