Dave Raval, former Parliamentary and Mayoral candidate in Hackney, has commented on the updated statement released by Hackney Council on Fire Safety:
"First and foremost I welcome the measures in the updated statement from Hackney Council. I wrote to Mayor Glanville on behalf of concerned residents calling for full, robust fire safety checks to be carried out on all tower blocks in Hackney and this statement confirms that this will be happening.
"I also called for all of these fire risk assessments to be made public so that residents can review the state of fire safety in their own buildings and so welcome the news that they will be available to view online. Transparency in this whole process is key to reassuring residents and we will also be reviewing all completed risk assessments on behalf of residents during the process and asking the advice of fire safety professionals.
"That being said, it is very worrying that it took ten days following the tragic Grenfell Tower fire to formally announce these measures, and the statement released by Hackney Council does not contain any clear timescales as to when any safety checks will take place and when they will be completed by.
"It is not clear whether any action at all has been taken to ensure fire safety in Hackney tower blocks, so we request that Hackney Council immediately release all information regarding any fire risk assessments that have been completed so far so that residents can review progress.
"The Mayor of Hackney and the council have been dragging their heels and the worrying lack of pace and urgency on fire safety has done little to reassure concerned residents ."
"It is also notable that Hackney Council still has the implementation of sprinkler systems under review when the evidence is clear that sprinklers are very effective in stopping the spread of fire in high-rise buildings.
"I recognise there are real challenges in retrofitting tower blocks with sprinkler systems but the reviews the council should be undertaking now should be exploring how to overcome those challenges and get the job done rather than asking whether it should be done.
"It is law that all new buildings taller than 30 metres are required to have sprinkler systems and we at the Hackney Liberal Democrats firmly believe that residents living in older buildings deserve the same level of safety."
Note to editors:
Letter from Dave Raval to the Mayor of Hackney:
Updated statement from Hackney Council on fire safety: