Brighton & Hove Labour For the many, not the few
Labour Councillors are bringing forward an amendment today to block Green attempts to ram through their proposed cuts to the lifeguard service, despite Labour securing additional funds to retain the service at Budget Council.
The Greens are determined to double down on their seemingly ideological cuts to lifeguards, which is bizarre considering Labour found funds to save them.
Labour’s amendment at this evening’s tourism, equalities, communities and culture (TECC) committee is designed to keep the Greens honest, and ensure they actually use the money Labour secured at Budget Council to retain existing lifeguard coverage for 2023.
This appears to be a desperate attempt by the outgoing Green administration to play politics with the lives of swimmers, just a week after they did the same with the lives of vulnerable refugee children. May 4th cannot come soon enough.
Labour’s co-spokesperson for tourism, Cllr Amanda Evans, said:
“The report the Greens are bringing to committee this afternoon represents either cock-up or conspiracy, and I’m not sure what’s worse.
“We saw a draft report before Budget Council, and we told them to delay its publication because we had found funds to save lifeguards. Despite us doing so, they have rushed to the first TECC committee to publish the exact same report (besides one extra bullet point about mitigation), despite the new resources.
“We hope it’s not cock-up – that officers couldn’t be bothered to produce a new report that utilised the funds we secured for them and the Greens didn’t give them a proper steer.
“But the conspiracy angle is worrying too – that the Greens are so keen to spike our guns and wipe out any perceived political gain for us before the local elections, that they are forcing through cuts to lifeguards to invalidate our claims that we’ve been able to save them.
“Either way, this is the behaviour of an administration running on fumes, out of ideas, out of time, and playing politics with the lives of people swimming in our seas just like they played politics with lives of vulnerable refugee children last week. They need to stop counting votes and start protecting lives.”
Labour Councillor Alan Robins, who is seconding Labour’s amendment, said:
“The lifeguards not only save the lives of those in immediate danger in the sea, they save an untold number of lives by offering advice on where it is safe to swim and the current conditions in the sea.
“They are a real asset to Brighton and Hove from Rottingdean to Portslade and we must do all we can to keep a full service and I would argue, possibly look at ways to improve our coverage in the future.”