Bill Esterson MP secures debate on the future of the Coastguard

Bill Esterson

Sefton Central Labour MP Bill Esterson has secured a Westminster Hall debate for the future of the Coastguard.

The debate follows the government’s u-turn on controversial plans which aimed to close more than half of the coastguard stations around Britain, and cut the opening hours of those that remain.

Bill Esterson MP who has been campaigning against the reforms, opened the debate by highlighting that the combined cuts to the Coastguard, added to the cuts to Police, Ambulance and Fire and Rescue services will have a detrimental impact on the emergency services that are available to people.

The Sefton Central MP received cross-party support for securing the debate, and highlighting the issue of the overall impact that the cuts to the emergency services will have.

Bill said: “The re-organisation has been rushed and the cuts to all emergency services is going too far and too fast. There is a lack of frontline involvement in the consultation process on the future of the Coastguard. There are serious issues that need to be addressed as to how the emergency services will replace the partnerships that they have built up with the Coastguard.

"The closure of the Crosby Coastguard station would result in vital local knowledge being lost, which could prove crucial in an emergency situation.

"The reality is that the cuts to Police, Ambulance, Fire and Rescue, and the Coastguard will result in a reduced service being available. The Coastguard is truly a UK wide service, and the proposed cuts will have a huge knock-on effect.”

During the debate, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State Mike Penning MP accepted that there needs to be more focus on the overall approach to emergency services.

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