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FBU warns of consequences of continued cuts on the Isle of Wight

Monday, May 2, 2016 - 7:00

THE lives of Islanders and the Isle of Wight firefighters who protect them could be at risk if the government persists with cuts to front-line services and training.
That’s the warning from Spencer Cave, secretary of the Isle of Wight Fire Brigades Union. He was one of the first to sign up to the Fight for the Wight campaign.
He believes continued government cuts to the Isle of Wight Council is having a serious effect on the Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service’s ability to do its job.
"For the Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service to continue doing its job effectively and safely, it needs to remain independent and be properly funded by the government," he said.
"Emergency 999 response times to fires are at their longest for 20 years throughout the country — a direct result of this government cutting the number of firefighters, fire stations and specialist equipment over the past five years.
"If the government continues to cut funding to the Isle of Wight Council, current cost-saving projects will falter as the continued financial stranglehold deepens.
"It would then be inevitable cuts to front-line fire appliances, services or staff may occur — a direct threat to the safety of Islanders, their property and businesses.
"The Island is a unique place and Island firefighters have an array of professional skills and experience — crewing varied specialist appliances to cover the Islands risks.
"Further cuts to training and equipment budgets will endanger not only the safety of the public but the also the safety of the firefighters who serve them.
"The residents of the Island are being punished with vital public services being cut or downgraded and the vulnerable in our society are suffering under government-driven austerity, created by bankers who were bailed out with taxpayers money, while the multi-national corporations and the ultra-rich of society wallow, unpunished, in systematic tax avoidance."
Find out how you can get involved in the Fight for the Wight campaign here.

Reporter: [email protected]

 


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