Labour to force Queen’s Speech vote in bid to end cuts to emergency services
Labour will today launch a Commons bid to recruit more police officers and firefighters in the wake of the Grenfell Tower fire and the recent terrorist attacks.
The party has tabled an amendment to the Queen’s Speech which also urges the Government to end the public sector pay cap and boost the wages of emergency service workers.
The subsequent vote by MPs will be the first to be held in the Commons since the general election.
Jeremy Corbyn said: "You can’t have safety and security on the cheap. It is plain to see that seven years of cuts to our emergency services has made us less safe; it’s time to make a change."
Labour said that under the Tories, there has been a reduction of 20,000 police officers and 6,000 Community Support Officers.
Police budgets have also been cut by £2.3bn since 2010, the party said.
Labour said there were 10,000 fewer firefighters compared to 2010, while more than 40 fire stations have been closed.
The Labour amendment "commends the response of the emergency services to the recent terrorist attacks and to the Grenfell Tower Fire, calls on the government to recruit more police officers and firefighters, and further calls on the government to end the public sector pay cap and give the emergency and public services a fair pay rise",
Mr Corbyn said: "Our emergency service workers make us proud at the worst of times for our country, such as the Grenfell Tower Fire and the recent terrorist attacks, and deserve the pay rise they have been denied for seven years.
“Conservative cuts have failed. Labour has a different approach, which values those who look after us and will transform Britain for the many not the few.”
The Conservatives praised the “heroic” emergency services while attacking Labour’s economic plans.
“The truth is you can't fund your emergency services without a growing, healthy economy which only Conservatives in Government will deliver – that’s why we have put forward a Queen’s Speech that will build a stronger economy so we can improve people’s living standards and fund public services,” a spokesman said.
“Jeremy Corbyn and Labour's prescription of tax rises and limitless borrowing would put all that at risk.”