Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 29 November 2014

NIFRS lobby MPs on cuts

Jim Shannon, DUP MP for Strangford, has met with members of the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS) at Westminster to discuss their concerns over any proposed changes to the funding for the NIFRS.

Among them was local fire fighter John Denver. Mr Shannon said the NIFRS delegation outlined their concerns about the proposals for changes at two Fire Stations and a potential threat to 150 jobs. He said he had written to the Minister responsible Michael McGimpsey to express his concern about the effect of these proposals in the Strangford area.

“The response unit is an integral part of the emergency services for the Ards and Strangford area. Already the NIFRS have agreed to a pay freeze which shows a commitment that has to be recognised.

“I am truly committed to ensuring that the present Fire Service cover in the Ards and Strangford area is retained and that the level of training that is required for any fire officer continues at the high standard that is needed.

“We owe our Fire Service so much. Even in recent days they have saved countless lives — road traffic accident responses, two large fires in the Ards where loss of life could have happened – they have been there through it all.”

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