Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service needs to urgently improve
Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service (FRS) needs to make urgent improvements as its service has deteriorated, a new report has found.
Get the report
Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) judged that the service:
- ‘requires improvement’ at effectively keeping people safe and secure from fire and other risks;
- ‘requires improvement’ at efficiently keeping people safe and secure from fire and other risks; and
- is ‘inadequate’ at looking after its people.
In light of the findings, HMICFRS moved Gloucestershire FRS into its enhanced monitoring process, Engage, which provides additional scrutiny and support.
Her Majesty’s Inspector of Fire and Rescue Services Wendy Williams said:
“We last inspected Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service in 2019. Unfortunately, our latest inspection shows the service has deteriorated since then and I have concerns about its performance in keeping people safe from fires and other risks. In particular, I have serious concerns about the way it promotes its values and culture, and how it is improving levels of understanding of the importance of equality, diversity and inclusion. In view of these findings, I have been in regular contact with the chief fire officer, as I do not underestimate how much improvement is needed.
“We graded the service as inadequate at looking after its people and requiring improvement across the other two areas of our assessment, namely, efficiently and effectively keeping people safe. In particular, the service hasn’t done enough to have its values and associated behaviours accepted and understood by everyone, or to promote a positive workplace culture, and previous efforts to instil these have been unsuccessful. Staff told us that senior leaders are not visible and staff described unacceptable behaviours, inconsistent with the service’s values, that they do not feel confident to challenge.
“Some staff are also frustrated at the slow progress in removing barriers to equality, diversity and inclusion, while others don’t understand the need for improvement. There is a lack of effective governance and actions taken so far lack planning and effective coordination.
“The service has invested time and effort to address problems identified during our previous inspection. But this work hasn’t been focused or co-ordinated, and staff haven’t been effectively involved.
“I have asked the service to produce a plan setting out how it will address the causes of concern we identified. We will revisit the service in the autumn to review progress against this plan.”
Get the report
- In its last inspection, Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service was rated as requiring improvement across all three areas of assessment.
- For further information, please email the HMICFRS Press Office at HMICPressOffice@hmicfrs.gov.uk or call us on 07836 217 729.