Ambulance staff are calling for tougher sentences for people who are violent towards them after figures show attacks on paramedics rode by 30 per cent last year.
Emergency response staff at West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) reported 139 violent assaults between April and September last year which included the trained emergency responders being kicked, punched, spat at, threatened with knives and even death.
This number is up from previous years, with complaints of verbal assaults rising by 13 per cent to 246 separate incidents despite the problem being widely highlighted.
WMAS trust chief executive Anthony Marsh will now write to Magistrate across the Midlands calling for tougher sentences to be handed out to attackers after brandishing the increase as “disgusting”.
Mr Marsh, said: “It is quite outrageous that our staff are having to put up with such violence.
“We are asking Magistrates to support us by taking the toughest possible action against people who assault staff. We know the public abhor this violence so we are hopeful that they will support this move.”
Steve Elliker, regional security manager at WMAS, said: “The penalties handed down are simply not sufficient to deter people currently.
“We need sentences to be a deterrent so that people think twice before they attack our staff.
“The fact that some of our staff do not report cases of violence because they do not believe that enough action will be taken against the perpetrator is a sad reflection on how they feel.
“We are working hard to change that perception but we want the courts to support us 100% so that this dreadful situation can be changed for the better.”
Last year, we highlighted the issue and produced these videos. Sadly, the situation is just as bad today as it was then.West Midlands Ambulance Service