Mayday! Britain’s heroic lifeboat volunteers are drowning in a sea of political correctness imposed by highly-paid pen pushers

Mayday! Britain’s heroic lifeboat volunteers are drowning in a sea of political correctness imposed by highly-paid pen pushers. By Guy Adams.

Drowning sailors are, of course, unlikely to care whether their rescuer owns an inappropriate item of crockery, or once set sail with unauthorised passengers.

Yet the RNLI insists its actions are warranted, arguing that it’s duty-bound to protect staff from bullying and harassment, and must enforce its safety protocols.

This clash, between what one might call traditional lifeboat culture and the forces of political correctness, turns out to be the source of heated conflict in RNLI stations nationwide. . . .

To have mass resignations at one lifeboat station might be considered unfortunate, but to suffer at least seven such cases in a period of around 18 months is somewhat more worrying. …

The people who do the actual rescuing are all volunteers, but:

Crucially, RNLI’s payroll has risen dramatically in other areas, too. In 1999, it had 750 employees, but within five years it had 1,000. By 2016 there were 2,366, with 35 senior executives earning more than £60,000, overseen by chief executive Paul Boissier, on a total package of £162,705.

Speak to disgruntled lifeboatmen and supporters, large numbers of whom contacted Mail columnist Richard Littlejohn after he highlighted the Whitby scandal last week, and you’ll hear a simple answer: many head office staff have become pointless jobsworths.

‘Like many big charities, the RNLI has become an empire builder’s dream,’ is how one fundraiser put it.

‘There are whole departments making up ridiculous health and safety protocols or human resources codes of conduct. It drives crews up the wall.’

They added that many are ‘third-sector careerists with no knowledge of the sea, or what makes lifeboats tick, who try to import Left-wing values.

‘Lifeboatmen, who are often working-class lads, won’t buy it.’

Evidence of this apparent trend — typical of the way the Left has taken hold of so many public bodies — can perhaps be seen in the RNLI’s annual report.

Though it used to limit its operations to the UK and Ireland, the RNLI now boasts of running ‘drowning prevention programmes’ in Tanzania, Zanzibar, Bangladesh, Ghana and Lesbos. (The latter refers to helping migrants trying to cross the Mediterranean in unseaworthy boats.) It talks of trying to ‘influence policy makers and partners’ and lobbying the UN to reduce deaths at sea.

The regulating class of near-useless and overpaid administrators and bureaucrats bringing down yet another organization, like the universities, hospitals, CSIRO, government media, …