The Irish Fire and Emergency Services Association (IFESA) said today (10th February) it is to commence a ballot of members for supporting industrial action by Dublin Fire Brigade members. This action is in response to Dublin City Manager's plans to go against all the evidence and expert reports, and proceed with his plan to take the Call & Dispatch function out of the control of Dublin Fire Brigade's Emergency Medical Services and assign it to the HSE. The Manager also refuses to resource additional Dublin Fire Brigade ambulances to meet the growing needs of the city.

IFESA is calling on all elected Dublin politicians (Oireachtas members and City Councillors ) to support IFESA's demand that resources be made available to commission at least four additional ambulances to adequately address the needs of the city and provide a safe and responsive ambulance services to the citizens of Dublin. IFESA National Chairman,

Ros MacCobb said “The refusal of the Dublin City Councils management to protect the integrity of the Call & Dispatch function of Dublin Fire Brigades ambulance service is concerning and radically changes the operation of the service. Their failure to also provide the resources for the enhanced ambulance services flies in the face of the very clear recommendation from the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) that there is currently a lack of capacity in the ambulance services in Dublin.

‘It is IFESA's belief that the failure of DCC to provide such services to the public in the exercise of its own powers derived directly from statute (European Court of Justice ruling 2007) and to act on the advice of HIQA is compromising the safety of the people of Dublin, something which neither Oireachtas members or local politicians can ignore'.

‘The failure of the management of Dublin City Council to resource the additional ambulances to meet the needs of the citizens of Dublin is also directly counter to undertakings in the Councils own 2014-2018 Corporate Plan which pledges to ‘lead the city with pride and integrity making decisions in the best interests of the city and its people'. There is no better way for DCC to act in the best interests of the city than to provide vital additional ambulances and we call on management to move to avert this dispute now.' IFESA will be moving to ballot its members on support for industrial action over the coming week.

Media Contact: Ros MacCobb 0872164533, Derek Cunningham 0862430535

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