The Labour Group called for proper consultation to take place in Ipswich, as well as in Lowestoft, concerning the proposed cuts to the full-time Fire Service in these areas.
Keith Patience, Councillor for Gunton in Lowestoft, used his opportunity to question the Cabinet in yesterday’s Full Council to get a commitment for a fair and inclusive consultation for both Ipswich and Lowestoft.
In response, Cllr Hicks commented “we intend to establish an effective and robust approach to our consultation.”
Speaking after the Council session, Cllr Patience said “The cuts proposed by the Council, with Lowestoft’s full-time station in South Lowestoft, as well as East Ipswich station, squarely in the Tory County Council’s line of fire, are illogical and ideologically driven. They will make it more difficult for our brave Fire crews to do their jobs and they will endanger Suffolk people.”
“The very least the Tory administration can do is carry out proper consultation with the public at events in Ipswich and Lowestoft, so that they fully understand the impact that these cuts will have on the sense of wellbeing and safety in these communities. In this sense, I am pleased with Cllr Hicks promise that he will accept any invite to consult in Lowestoft.”
Cllr Patience added, “I stand with the Fire Brigade’s Union in Suffolk in opposing these cuts and urge anyone that agrees to sign their petition calling on a full debate on the matter”.
“Will Cllr Hicks genuinely listen to people’s views at Ipswich Area Committee meetings regarding proposed cuts to the fire service?”
“Given the less-than-overwhelming attendance at the public consultation meeting on the budget in Ipswich last night, will Councillors Hicks consider holding meetings with the public in popular venues across Lowestoft, like the Ipswich area committees, rather than stuck in the a room in the Council office?”
Link to Petition: