PEOPLE Before Profit Councillor Shaun Harkin has said that it would be unwise to cut corners on firefighters ability to respond to emergencies.
Said Cllr Harkin: “”Plans to cut Fire Services in Derry and across the North should be rigorously opposed.
“Derry firefighters have raised concerns with People Before Profit at how proposed changes could impact their ability to respond to emergencies.
“Fire Service bosses need to listen first to on the ground firefighters about how to best protect emergency services and protect the public.
“We should not be taking chances with the capacity of firefighters to respond to emergencies. This is not something we can afford to cut corners with.
“We are backing the Fire Brigades Union in its effort to resist any proposed changes that undermine emergency response services and workers rights.
“Fire services have faced years of cuts. Today there are fewer firefighters and their capacity to respond to multiple emergencies at any one time has been strained.
“The mantra of working with reduced budgets for public services is constant.
“But what exactly has the Stormont Executive done to push forward the call raise taxes on billionaires, the super rich and powerful corporations more to properly fund critical public services? The answer is very little.
“They haven’t even written a letter to Westminster to demand a new Covid Wealth Tax.
“We don’t accept the argument there is no alternative to reducing the capacity of the fire services or the health service. T
“There is an alternative. We urge everyone to stand with our firefighters.”