A CAMPAIGN for tougher sentences to be imposed on those who assault emergency workers has been ignited by Meriden MP Caroline Spelman.
The MP has submitted a parliamentary motion calling on the government to undertake ‘urgent action’ to strengthen penalties for offenders who assault on-duty emergency service workers.
She also appealed to cross party MPs from across the region to write to the home secretary to declare their support for the principles of the draft ‘Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences)’ Bill, which was drafted by Labour’s Chris Bryant.
In the West Midlands region alone, 669 assaults were recorded against officers from West Midlands Police between April and December last year.
A further 525 verbal assaults and 362 physical assaults were carried out against local ambulance crews between April 2016 and April 2017.
Statistics also show that on average 75 assaults on fire fighters are recorded in our region each year.
In a letter to West Midlands MPs, Dame Caroline said: “I am sure that many of you will have seen the recent news reports in which a female Police officer was violently assaulted and had her hair ripped out whilst making an arrest following a domestic incident at a house in Wolverhampton.
“Whilst this attack serves a poignant reminder of the significant risks that all front-line emergency service workers face in the line of duty, the fact remains that this shocking incident is only out of thousands of attacks that are perpetrated against staff working in our emergency services each year.
“This is a wholly unacceptable situation”.
She encouraged cross party West Midlands MPs to demonstrate “united support for our local emergency services and help change the law as it currently stands to try to prevent future such instances.
She added: “Legislation to enhance protections for front line emergency service workers must be introduced at the earliest opportunity”.