A woman who’s collected thousands of pounds for the RNLI is suspending her fundraising efforts until ‘sacked’ lifeboat coxswain Andy Hibbs is reinstated.
Vicky Boarder, who runs the Fresh Fish Company on the Victoria Pier, has withdrawn all her collecting tins, and has urged others to do the same.
She’s angry over the way the national RNLI have handled the dismissal of Mr Hibbs (44), and says “the whole Island needs to rally round and support him and the crew.” She believes suspending fundraising sends a clear message to the charity that the crew have huge community support and wont be bullied. But, she stresses she’ll put the tins back out if the coxswain is taken back.
“We’ve supported the RNLI for many years, but I now feel they’re letting us down”, she adds.
In an open letter to the national RNLI the local crew say: "We raised the money for the George Sullivan with support from the local finance industry and the RNLI fundraising staff commented at the time that it was one of the easiest campaigns they could remember".
There’s increased interest in how the national RNLI is spending its money. In a letter to the Council of Ministers former crew member, Paul Battrick, wants to know if it’s the Island or the charity that’s paying the salaries of an emergency crew that have been flown in, and who is paying their hotel and food bills. There seems to be growing hostility to the crew that's been brought in, but the local crew say: "we would request that the RNLI crew from the UK who have come to the Island to provide lifesaving cover in Island waters until this dispute is resolved are shown the respect that they deserve from the Island community, as our issues are with the RNLI management and not our fellow colleagues who provide vital lifesaving services up and down the UK coasts."
Assistant Chief Minister Senator Paul Routier has since confirmed the States aren't covering the costs of the visiting crews. He also says he's organised a meeting between the Chief Minister, Senator Ian Gorst - who's currently out of the Island - and the national RNLI for early next week.
Questions are also being asked in the States on Tuesday.
The crew say they’d go back if there was an emergency and they were called out, but otherwise are standing firm on their mass walkout decision. They’ll only go back if the coxswain is re-instated.
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with no boats to u k not working the states of jersey yes states of jersey