Late last night, Michael Fabricant spoke about the lack of police numbers in Staffordshire and the threat facing the future of the Victoria Hospital in Lichfield in the debate on the Queen’s Speech in Parliament.
He said that the speech, written for the Queen by 10 Downing Street, was all spin and no delivery designed for a forthcoming general election. While he supported a crack down on "yob culture", announced in the speech, he asked how this was to be enforced when there are only 3 or 4 regular police officers backed up by 4 or 5 special constables on an average Friday or Saturday night in Lichfield. He said that it is difficult enough already for police officers without imposing extra burdens including the imposition of on the spot fines for rowdiness. He pointed out that police numbers in Staffordshire have fallen by 240 officers and civilians since the last election and that the Government should be raising the number of police officers before introducing gimmicky legislation which is unworkable without the officers on the ground.
He then spoke of the situation at the Victoria Hospital in Lichfield where the maternity unit, dialysis unit, and minor injuries face the axe under the local Health Authority review of services. He said that the South Staffordshire Health Authority are delaying making a decision still further by conducting yet another expensive survey into local needs when a good survey had already just been completed. Once again this demonstrated this Government’s obsession with style rather than substance or delivery of services.
The text of the speech presented in the House of Commons at 9.18pm on Monday 11th December can be found on this website under Selected Speeches.