The impact bullying and racism allegations in the fire service nationally has been acknowledged by firefighters in Berkshire.

Recently, the findings of an ‘Independent Culture Review’ of the London Fire Brigade were published, which concluded that the fire service in London is “institutionally misogynist and racist”.

The review was in part triggered following the death of trainee firefighter Jaden Francois-Esprit, who committed suicide aged 21 in August 2020, while working at Wembley fire station.

The investigation was led by the solicitor Nazir Afzal, who made 23 recommendations for changes to the fire brigade to focus on changing its culture and stamping out misogyny and racism.

READ MORELondon Fire Brigade institutionally misogynist and racist, review finds

The impact of the review and the recommendations were discussed  at a meeting of the Royal Berkshire Fire Authority management committee, which is attended by representatives of all six Berkshire councils.

Councillor Colin Dudley (Conservative, Crown Wood), the chair of the committee, said the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service ( RBFRS) has a “zero tolerance policy” on harassment.

Wayne Bowcock, chief fire officer, declared that RBFRS is committed to doing a ‘gap analysis’ to identify areas of improvement.

Mr Bowcock said: “I generally think we’re in a good place, but we must not be complacent.”

Cllr Paul Gittings (Labour, Coley) added: “We absolutely can’t be complacent in anyway.” He also called the findings of the culture review ‘shocking’.

READ MORE: Firefighters face sack if found to have bullied or been racist, LFB boss says

Recommendations of the review were split into a number of topics, which included ‘creating a workplace where everyone is afforded dignity’ and improving wellbeing.

Discussion of the topic was made during announcements made by Mr Bowcock during the meeting at the RBFRS headquarters at the Pincents Kiln Industrial Estate on December 6.