Dublin City Councillor Paul McAuliffe has said that Government’s decision to finally support a motion raised by his party and debated in Dáil Éireann this month was needed for a long time.
I am optimistic that this cross party support will ensure the full retention of emergency services provided by Dublin Fire Brigade.
Echoing the comments made by his colleague Darragh O’Brien TD, Cllr McAuliffe said “The almost 1,000 highly trained and skilled personnel working with Dublin Fire Brigade (DFB) has been providing essential ambulance services to Dubliners for the past 120 years.
“The Brigade provides immediate, lifesaving medical assistance to members of the public in need of treatment 24/7, 365 days a year. Thousands of families, including my own, have had experience of being protected by the members of the DFB.
“The HSE’s proposal to remove the delivery of Dublin’s ambulance service from Dublin Fire Brigade and instead merge the service with the National Ambulance Service could have an adverse effect on safeguarding those in our community.
“Staff should be lauded for their ability to respond to thousands of emergency calls across the capital every year, not denigrated, to have funding withdrawn, or to have their service run down.
“There should be 133 firefighters and paramedics as well as 36 officers on duty at all times maintaining front-line fire appliance. However, there is currently a deficit in staff and resources. We need at least another four ambulances within the service
“We need to send out a clear statement that the Dáil establishes policy and makes decisions on behalf of, and in the best interest of the people who elect us. I am pleased that Government have at last listened to opposition and have recognised the importance of this issue.
“It has been a pleasure for me over the past 10 years on the council to work with both current and retired members of Dublin Fire Brigade. I hope we can move forward with an implementation plan with haste to ensure this service remains one of the best in Europe and that we further invest in the service.
“Our motion, supported now by Government, reiterates our party’s firm commitment to the full retention of a fire based emergency service.”
Martin McCabe, Station Officer, Finglas Fire Station with Cllr Paul McAuliffe at the Finglas Fire Station.