Friday, 8 February 2013

Keeping Communities Safe document will lead to a poorer Fire Service in Wicklow

Wicklow Sinn Féin and the Irish Fire and Emergency Services
Association (IFESA) are jointly holding a public meeting to discuss
the fire service in Wicklow and the impact that the new Government
policy will have on Wicklow. The new policy was enacted by Minister
Phil Hogan, T.D. Minister for the Environment, Community and Local
Government on the 7 February, 2013. The new national policy which is
to be implemented immediately is based on the “Keeping Communities
Safe” (KCS) document which is the blueprint for the future direction
of the fire service. The public meeting will take place on Monday 18
February at 8pm in the Royal Hotel, Bray

Cllr Brady said" There is a lot of concern around the direction the
government is taking the fire service. The Keeping Communities Safe
document which is the blueprint for the future direction of the fire
service was officially adopted by the government as policy on 7
February. I had asked that any new proposals should not be implemented
while the reasons for the deaths of two Bray Fire fighters remain
unknown 5 years on, however this unfortunately fell on deaf ears."

Cllr Brady continued "There is a real fear that the new policy which
is contained in the Keeping Communities Safe document will result in
the loss of hundreds of front line fire fighter posts around the
country, with over a 100 posts being lost in Dublin Fire Brigade
alone. These plans if implemented will see fire fighter numbers
reduced and fire stations closed, it will also seriously restrict the
type of emergency the service can respond to, this in turn will
compromise the safety of the public and communities throughout the
country. Both SIPTU and IFESA who represent front-line fire fighters
have serious concerns about these plans and their members are being
balloted for industrial action such are their concerns."

"Wicklow Sinn Féin and  IFESA are holding a public on Monday 18
February in the Royal Hotel, Bray to discuss the impact this new
policy will have on the service in Wicklow. As we already know the
service in Wicklow has serious issues and the fear is this will
compound those problems and lead to greater risk for both the public
and front line fire fighters."

"Speakers on the night will include IFESA National Vice Chairman, Ros
Mac Cobb and Margaret Cahill who has been campaigning for a full time
fire service in Bray since the death of her sister Teresa and her
13-months-old baby boy Chris in a fire in the Oldcourt Estate in Bray
12 years ago."

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