Warning over Fire and Rescue Service cuts

Posted by
info@newrytimes.com
Friday, December 19th, 2014
Politics
Newry & Armagh Sinn Féin MLA Cathal Boylan has said that there is an urgent need for the Minister for Health, Social Services and Public Safety to engage with the Fire and Rescue Service to work out a ‘sensible and appropriate plan’ for restructuring. The Sinn Féin representative was commenting after representatives of the Fire & Rescue Service had expressed concern at plans to significantly cut the organisation’s budget. “Sinn Féin have warned that there could be dire consequences if planned cuts to the Fire and Rescue Service go ahead. Representatives of the Fire and Rescue Service have expressed concern at plans to significantly cut the organisation’s budget. “In particular they have warned about the impact of plans to cut the budget by up to 15 per cent in one financial year and for this to be completed as soon as possible. “The Fire and Rescue Service has indicated that it is committed to restructuring but believe it would be more suitable if it was carried out over a three-year period. Fire and Rescue carry out invaluable work in keeping communities safe, particularly at this time of year. “The impact of this plan could have dire consequences to the service they provide,” he warned. “It could result in redundancies, the closure of fire stations and the removal of fire appliances. Boylan added, “I am urging the Minister for Health, Social Services and Public Safety to engage fully with the Fire and Rescue Service to work out a sensible and appropriate plan for restructuring instead of attempting to force them into this situation.”

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