New York City Fire Department (FDNY) EMTs and paramedics are being attacked and need help but no one is listening, their union chief claims.
Since the beginning of the year, the windows of at least four ambulances have been smashed and vehicles parked outside an EMS [Emergency Medical Services] base in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, have been vandalized, according to Oren Barzilay, president of Local 2507 of the Uniformed EMTs, Paramedics, and Fire Inspectors union.
“On Jan. 1, an EMS crew was driving on Marcus Garvey Boulevard near Quincy Street just before 6 p.m. when someone hurled an unknown object, smashing a passenger side window, police said. No one was reported injured,” the New York Post noted.
Barzilay told the Post his crews are being targeted, adding the most recent incident happened when someone threw a brick at crews responding to a call.
“These incidents are causing a delay in getting the public the help they need as these units are placed off-service for investigation, the wellness of our members and repairs,” he continued.
On Tuesday, two ambulances near FDNY EMS Station 57 reportedly had “FTP” spraypainted on them, which is slang for “Fuck the police,” according to the Post.
The union chief asserted his crews come up against “day-to-day assault,” but receive no safety, self-defense, or de-escalation training and have 20-year-old bulletproof vests to wear.
In December, an ambulance team was allegedly ambushed and robbed at gunpoint in Brooklyn, according to Breitbart News.
The team, consisting of a man and woman, arrived at an address noted on a 911 call only to make it to the building’s 11th floor where they were reportedly robbed.
“The suspect(s) allegedly ‘took their supply bag’ and sent them back to their ambulance. The bag was later recovered ‘with the radio and tablet missing,’” the article read.
During his interview, the union president said there was no indication anything was being done to address their concerns about safety.
“The [FDNY] department is only reactive when someone gets killed,” he stated.