The District Federation of Firefighters of Viana do Castelo announced, this Monday, that, if not invited by the Secretary of State for Civil Protection (SEPC), Patrícia Gaspar, the corporations of that district will not receive the official in a meeting that is scheduled for the next February 22nd.
According to a communiqué released by that federation, chaired by Germano Amorim, the decision was taken at an ordinary general meeting held on January 27 and had favorable votes from representatives of volunteers from Paredes de Coura, Monção, Ponte da Barca, Ponte de Lima, Arcos Valdevez, Viana do Castelo, Valença and Caminha. Abstained in the vote were Vila Nova de Cerveira, the Sapadores Firefighters of Viana do Castelo and also the chairman of the board of the Caminha Firefighters.
“The respective federations should not be present at any meeting with Mrs SEPC, specifically the one scheduled in this district for the next 22 February 2023”, informs the District Federation of Firefighters of Viana do Castelo, adding that the said decision “was taken in solidarity and strict consistency with the previous decision taken at the last extraordinary Council of Federations, in which it was unanimously approved by the directors present and with all the national federations represented, that there would be no representation of the Federations in any working meeting with Mrs. SEPC”.
At issue is the fact that Patrícia Gaspar did not send “any formal invitation to the Federations” to participate in a round of meetings that will be taking place in the country. “If there is a written invitation to this Federation and duly communicated to its respective federations, they may decide otherwise. As long as this remains the case, we will not tolerate and condone the intolerable and incomprehensible contempt and institutional disrespect for the existing formal structure at national level in firefighters and , specifically, of this Federation, which is still the highest entity representing firefighters in the district”, informs that statement released today, adding that “this position is thus extended to all fire departments in the district, whether organized in voluntary associations, or, by the municipal councils and respective sapper firefighters”.
“We no longer accept the constant disrespect to which we are voted. Civil protection cannot want to implement a reform made with elbows in total disrespect with the pre-existing organic of firefighters based on the reality of the districts”, defends the president of the Federation of Firefighters from Viana do Castelo, Germano Amorim, quoted in the same communiqué, which lists the needs of the sector, namely, “concrete support for volunteering in the last district at national level, with the adoption of a social statute to support firefighters”.