Belmont, Perth,
23
May
2018
|
09:25
Australia/Perth

WA supports message ‘It’s never ok’

“It is important for people to be reminded that violence against Paramedics is not ok and there are serious consequences for offenders"
St John Chief Executive Officer Tony Ahern

St John Ambulance WA is proud to stand by our inter-state colleagues and reinforce the message that aggression and violence against paramedics, other emergency responders and health workers is totally unacceptable.

St John CEO Tony Ahern said that the organisation has, and will continue to, ensure the safety of its staff and volunteers is a priority.

“Thankfully these incidents occur in a small percentage of the cases we attend, however, we still find it of great concern that our officers are injured in the line of duty through such cowardly attacks,” Mr Ahern said.

“We are pleased to see that the Victorian Government has introduced mandatory sentencing laws, similar laws have been in place in WA since in 2009.

“It sends a clear message that these types of behaviours will not be tolerated and are not an acceptable part of our community,” Mr Ahern said.

In 2017 there were close to 100 physical assaults on WA paramedics of which around 50% of those resulted in an injury. We still find it of great concern that our officers are injured in the line of duty through such cowardly attacks,” Mr Ahern said.

“Our crews attend hundreds of calls daily and our Paramedics are trained to leave any scene immediately if they are threatened with violence.”

“We also have a number of protection methods in place and programs that equip our paramedics with the behaviours and tactical skills to reduce exposure to occupational violence,” Mr Ahern said.

“Paramedic that experience an assault will report the incident allowing the organisation to work directly with Police to pursue offenders. St John provides a range of support services for our staff and volunteers that experience occupational violence.

“It is important for people to be reminded that violence against Paramedics is not ok and there are serious consequences for offenders,” Mr Ahern said.

Media contact: Joanne Hill, Media and Public Relations, 9334 6717 / jo.hill@stjohnambulance.com