MEDIA RELEASE: United Voice Condemns On-going Violence Against Paramedics

MEDIA RELEASE: United Voice Condemns On-going Violence Against Paramedics



United Voice, the Ambulance union condemns the on-going violence against paramedic and first responding emergency workers.

This written condemnation comes as a man charged with recently assaulting a WA Paramedic will be appearing in Midland Magistrates court tomorrow.

The Paramedic was punched to the side of the face, resulting in a broken jaw, by a male patient at St John of God Hospital, Midland on 24 August 2019.

Statistics shown in the Public Health Research and Practice of March 2018 show the rates of violence related injuries to paramedics across Australia have doubled since 2003 with female paramedics having excessively higher occurrences of violence than their male colleagues.

United Voice WA Assistant Secretary Patrick O’Donnell said Paramedics are regularly exposed to trauma and violence through their work.

“Paramedics are regularly exposed to trauma and experience extremely high rates of PTSD and when you are constantly subjected to violence from patients and by-standers it understandably just adds to the trauma,”

“As frontline emergency personnel, Paramedics often work in dangerous situations to save lives.”

Mr O’Donnell said the assaults are increasingly common, but shouldn’t be part of the job.

“There are strong laws in place to deter these sorts of offences from occurring, but it is clear that more needs to be done.”

In June this year, Ambulance Paramedics attended the Health Minister’s Summit on Violence.

“Members want to see improved security facilities at emergency departments, better coordination between emergency services, and greater public awareness of the consequences of assaulting a public officer.”

United Voice will continue to work with the State Government and St John Ambulance to ensure that Paramedics are protected within the community.