asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he is aware that complaints have been made as to the inadequacy of comforts and amenities in stations of the National Fire Service in the Liverpool area; that a request by the Liverpool Trades Council to send a visiting delegation to the stations has been rejected by the Regional Commissioner through the local fire force commander; and whether, in order to investigate complaints made, he will allow the Liverpool Trades Council to appoint a small number of their members to visit the stations for the purpose of making an impartial investigation?
Yes, Sir. An inspection of stations in the Liverpool Area, which were considered by the Fire Brigades Union to be unsatisfactory, was made recently by representatives of' the Regional Commissioner and the Union, and measures are being taken to effect any necessary improvments as quickly as possible. In the circumstances my right hon. Friend cannot see that any useful purpose would be served by a further inspection by an organisation which has no responsibility for the conditions of service in the National Fire Service. He regrets, therefore, that he is unable to comply with my hon. Friend's suggestion.
Is my hon. Friend suggesting that the Home Office is supporting the Regional Commissioner against representation from the Liverpool Trades Council visiting institutions in their own city? Is she aware that if the Fire Service had still been municipally owned Trades Council representatives would probably have been welcomed by the city authorities to visit any of their premises?