David Crausby MP has expressed his support for local firefighters, who have been threatened with mass dismissal if they do not agree to 12 hour shifts and a wave of job cuts.
The Government has forced Greater Manchester Fire Authority (GMFA) to cut £28million from their budget in the last six years. They are now being made to cut a further £14.8million from their budget by 2019.
GMFA have proposed cutting firefighters by 253 from the current 1,017 positions. This is already down by more than half from the 2,200 firefighters employed in 1996.
Bosses of the emergency service have said, unless firefighters accept the reduced positions and sign up to new contracts with 12 hours shifts, they plan to make every firefighter redundant and force them to reapply for their positions.
David Crausby MP, who represents Bolton North East, has given his backing to the Fire Brigades Union and the firefighters as they contest these decisions.
Mr Crausby said:
“The very suggestion that every firefighter in Greater Manchester could be made redundant is an absolute scandal. It is emblematic of this Government’s approach to our key public services; they keep cutting back funding until there’s nothing left then passing the blame once jobs start to go and services start to disappear.
“Firefighters deserve to be treated with respect, this includes funding the service properly and making sure there are enough of them to do the job with minimum risk. I give my backing to the FBU in the fight against these cuts in Greater Manchester and hope that a strong Labour opposition will emerge in Parliament to challenge the Government as these cuts put this vital service at risk.”