Call for flags to be lowered for N.L. residents ‘in jeopardy’

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Request made to municipalities organization by retiring rescue co-ordinator

Flags flying in front of city hall in St. John's. — File Photo/The Telegram

Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador has endorsed the lowering of flags at municipal buildings to half-mast today, in recognition of the impending closure of the Maritime Rescue Sub Centre in St. John’s.

The move will acknowledge “the Newfoundlanders and Labradorians whose lives will be put in jeopardy by the action of the federal government,” according to a news release by the organization, its members representing 276 cities and towns in the province.

“Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador supports the work of the (sub-centre) and will continue to lobby the federal government to reverse the decision to close the (centre) that was made in June 2011. MNL forwarded a resolution addressing the closure at the Atlantic Mayor’s Congress in 2011, which was unanimously passed. Further action on this issue with the federal minister is ongoing,” stated the association’s release.

The endorsement does not mean municipalities will be required to lower their flags.

As The Telegram reported earlier this week, all calls to the sub-centre are now being re-routed to the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre in Halifax, according to retiring rescue co-ordinator Merv Wiseman.

Wiseman has sworn to continue the fight for the return of the sub-centre service, even after his employment with the federal government comes to an end May 8.

Wiseman told The Telegram he would be making the request for the flag lowering to both Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador and the provincial government.

Meanwhile, St. John's city council has approved one last act of defiance in the war of words to save the Marine Rescue Sub-Centre in St. John's.

The city and provincial flags flying outside city hall will be lowered to half-mast today to "commemorate the lives of those Newfoundlanders and Labradorians who will be put at risk as a result of the (centre's) closure," said Coun. Frank Galgay, who introduced the motion at Tuesday night's council meeting.

It's a simple gesture with a clear message, said Mayor Dennis O'Keefe.

"Essentially, what we are doing is sending that message across Newfoundland and Labrador, sending it to Ottawa - sending the message of our dissatisfaction and symbolizing the closure of that facility," O'Keefe said.

Coun. Danny Breen said, "there's not much more we can say about this. It's a terrible decision."



Organizations: Maritime Rescue Sub Centre, The Telegram, Joint Rescue Coordination Centre

Geographic location: Newfoundland and Labrador, Atlantic Mayor, Halifax

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Recent comments

  • ralph rowe
    May 08, 2012 - 06:07

    have you ever heard of such utter nonsense as this being posted bye the samepeople on everything from fruit to nuts .go back to the talk shows with the others who have nothing better to do except gripe about everything and everytone........

  • gord
    April 27, 2012 - 22:07

    I've been around for a few years now and I can not recall such an obvious punishment for not electimg federal PC members. I don't think I could even feel safe onboard the gulf ferrys now. I guess we'll travel local this summer, at least safety is priority at the provincial level.

  • Ryan
    April 26, 2012 - 14:00

    If this center had been located anywhere but St. John's it would be at very most a one day small news item. This has nothing to do with safety and all to do with 14 jobs lost in St. John's. Big Deal.

    April 25, 2012 - 19:32

    God Guard thee Newfoundland.. we are being abandoned by Ottawa with the full support of our own Provincial Government. as far as Stevie is concerned, this is not a mistake, it's called getting even and he is not finished yet.

    April 25, 2012 - 11:18

    Just take down the red rag altogether, put up the Pink White and Green, and get us out!

  • Evan
    April 25, 2012 - 11:06

    Closing this site is a Bad Mistake on the Government's part. Not sure if I want to be in a boat anymore. Shame. What else are they going to Close?