#bravery

First responder assaults – the shocking stats

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We must question the sanity of the world we live in. First responders – police, fire and ambulance – are generally people trying to save the community from danger by putting themselves in harm’s way. Yet the incidence of assaults against them has grown to shocking levels around the world. These are not exhaustive stats (this will come in a more comprehensive piece) but this piece paints a picture of what is going on and why we shouldn’t be surprised at the growing incidences of PTSD suffered by first responders. Something must be done. The next journey for CM is to provide a solution.

By branch:

POLICE

The FBI noted in 2016 that 57,180 (c.10% of all) US police officers were assaulted while performing their duties. 28.9% were injured (enough to enforce time away from work). The largest percentage of victim officers (32.2%) were assaulted while responding to disturbance calls (domestic violence, family disputes, pub fights).

Assailants used hands, fists or feet in 78% of the incidents, firearms in 4.2% of incidents, and knives or other cutting instruments in 1.9% of the assaults. Other types of dangerous weapons were used in 16% of assaults. Assaults on police in the US are up 17% in the past two years. 

In NSW, Australia some 2,343 (13.3%) police officers out of 16,500 have been at the receiving end of assault in 2017. That’s 6 per day. With regard to official statistics, the NSW Police Force indicated that over a three year period from 2013 to 2015, an average of 2,236 police officers per year were assaulted during the course of their duties. Around 7% of officers actually end up physically injured. 

 AMBULANCE/EMS

In the US health care professionals experience the highest rate of workplace violence (WPV) compared to all other industries, with the majority of violent injuries committed by their patients according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Studies show EMS responders were three times higher than the national average for all other occupations to suffer WPV. In regards to occupational fatalities, the rate among paramedics is more than twice the national average for all occupations and is comparable to those of police and firefighters at 12.7 per 100,000 workers per year.

The rate of nonfatal injuries among US paramedics was 34.6 per 100 full-time workers per year — a rate more than 5x higher than the national average for all workers.  In regard to fatal injuries, a retrospective cohort study of nationally registered emergency medical technicians (EMTs) in the U.S. found that 8% of fatalities were due to assaults. 

Males have been reported as the most frequent perpetrators of violence however, a separate study found female patients of the mean age of 32.5 years +/- 8.1 years to be the most frequent perpetrators. 

In the NSW Ambulance Service, approximately 51% of assault incidents were attributed to mental illness, 22% to alcohol, 15% to drugs. Similarly, statistics provided by the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (BOCSAR) concerning violence against Police from July 2006 to June 2016 suggest alcohol is a factor in many incidents.  Assaults on ambos in NSW are up 8-fold since 2001. Median lost hours for those EMS crew assaulted is around 8.6 weeks.

FIRE FIGHTERS

In what world do people shoot fireys? Here are 3 specific incidents in 2016 of attacks on fire fighters in the US. 

April 15, 2016: Firefighter fatally shot, second wounded in Prince George’s, Baltimore, Maryland

Jan. 22, 2016: Ark. firefighter shot, killed on EMS call, Pulaski County, Arkansas,

Jan. 20, 2016: Denver fire chief stabbed near station, Denver, Colorado,

Fire and Rescue NSW indicated its officers do not have the sort of violence prevention training of police and paramedics better able to protect their crew’s health and safety, including in respect of violent incidents. At the Parliamentary Committee’s hearing on 14 November 2016, Fire and Rescue NSW witnesses provided the following evidence:

Basically, when a crew arrives at an incident, you have a station officer and a station commander in charge of the crew and the…truck. That person undergoes promotional programs to get to that position. Part of that is understanding how the legislation is applied in reality from a practical point of view. Also, during that experience – we are talking probably eight to 10 years for that to occur …The promotional programs…cover the responsibilities of the officer and advise around the standard operational guidelines of when to withdraw and ask for police support and what is safe or not safe.

…If we look overseas for experiences and tried to align our experience to that, you would have to say that the civil unrest that is happening in the United States probably would not occur here to that degree. However, there is also an underlying issue in the United States where emergency service is seen as part of an arm of government and there is, hopefully, a small growing trend where emergency service ambushes are occurring…random shooters are calling emergency services to locations to make a point. We hope that never crosses to this country here, but we would always have an eye on what happens in other jurisdictions…because it is quite possible someone would pick that up as a possibility in this jurisdiction….”

PRISON GUARDS

The UK HMPS note that there were 7,159 assaults on staff in the year to March 2017 up 32%YoY. Serious assaults were up 25%YoY to 805 incidents. The National Tactical Response Group (NTRG) which is only called under extreme levels of prisoner violence  surged from 120 in 2010 to an annualized 630 by the end of 2016.  

THE PTSD IMPACT

This was the fascinating part of the research. It isn’t that the job isn’t hard enough already, it’s the lack of resources to support first responders when waiting for incidents. Lots of idle time to ponder.

US FEMA note stress has not only been categorized by exposure to traumatic incidents, but also the monotonous operational characteristics of EMS organizations, such as paperwork, lack of administrative support, low wages, long hours, irregular shifts, and cynical societal attitudes toward public safety officers.

Cumulative stress associated with the monotonous duties or low acuity calls has led to feelings of desensitization for patients, and their job as a whole. Concerns have also been raised regarding sleep quality and fatigue and the impact it has not only on the provider, but also job performance and patient  outcomes. Some research has posited that organizational stress often contributes more to the development of PTSD than traumatic events.

Also noteworthy is the notion that paramedics are often the source for a lot of criticisms by society for the decisions they make in determining life or death situations for patients and themselves. This can affect EMS providers in many ways and may contribute to the slow decline in provider morale.

Burnout (emotional exhaustion) is one of many organizational outcomes that may arise as a result of violence experienced by EMS responders. The question of whether or not violence would eventually lead to burnout was first raised in the early 1990s . Exposures to violence were noted as a reason many EMTs, especially volunteers, left the profession. In an early study from 1998, 7% of survey respondents within one urban fire department considered leaving EMS as a direct result of an abusive situation they encountered while on the job. Knowing how to emotionally cope following a tough incident can help to reduce anxiety and burnout.  

Mixed methods studies conducted in the U.S. and Sweden found that violent encounters altered the patient-provider relationship. Yet, some in the industry feel that exposures to violence do not cause stress or negatively impact providers. This lack of effect has been attributed to the internalization of the mentality that violence is a part of the job.  It has been posited that years of experience may be a protective factor that allows more experienced responders to experience less stress and anxiety after violent events. 

Evidence weighing the social and economic costs associated with increased violence and burnout is based mostly upon anecdotal evidence, with no assessments conducted on monetary value. Some suggest that, as violence increases, the need for police backup also increases, thereby increasing response time and delaying potentially critical care to a patient in need. 

Other concerns include altered operations for the private sector of EMS. Intent to leave the profession is also a concern. As more EMS responders leave the profession, numerous organizational and patient impacts have been hypothesized, including increased costs for training new EMTs and paramedics, greater numbers of inexperienced paramedics serving at any one point in time, and increased error rates committed by new and inexperienced paramedics. EMS responders also report seeking a job change away from their ambulance role. In some cases, responders stated they lost interest in fieldwork and tried to get off the road and into desk positions. 

What’s clear is that not enough is being done to help first responders cope with occupational hazards and handling the stress that comes from it. That is going to change very soon. Stay  posted!

While you’re at it, why not thank those first responders randomly in the street for the great work they do. It goes a long way! They need you just as much as you will need them when you’re in a bind!

69 bushfires in NSW today

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While a bushfire in Dobroyd Point, Sydney looked terrible it was classified as a scheduled burn-off. Looking at the NSW Rural Fire Service, there were 69 fire incidents across the state today. So for those that were concerned about the Sydney fire, you can keep tabs here.

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Cartoon of the Day

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Chinese military to crush Australia with a microphone & speaker

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Here is a thought. If you get easily get triggered by gender bullying don’t join the military. Command Sgt. Maj. Edward Mitchell of the US Army said, “War doesn’t distinguish between gender and age. You can be 20 years old on the battlefield, or you can be 50, and you’re going to have to accomplish the same mission.”

China must be laughing. Instead of buying state of the art weapons to combat the Australian Defence Forces (ADF) it’d be better off popping down to its local consumer electronics store and investing in a microphone and a ghetto blaster so it can gender bully our overly sensitive LGBT soldiers into surrender. Never has the Knights who say Ni! scene from Monty Python’s Holy Grail summed up our leaders’ pathetic pandering to turning our military into a laughing stock.

However is it even true that all LGBT soldiers to a lesbian, gay, bi, trans and queer individual feel in any way triggered by this garbage? Odds on the majority probably don’t but the top brass actively undermines them by classifying these individuals as a homogeneous group. The DoD and ADF probably consulted a few outside activists and drew a conclusion rather than ask those it directly affected. Canada made this very same mistake over Bill C-16.

Let’s be real. The majority of our troops join the military for love of country and sense of purpose. CM had drinks last week with a brave veteran who is setting up a technology to help the 10s of millions who suffer PTSD to cope. It is such a noble quest and CM will be an active member driving it.  He said he is sick to death of burying his mates from PTSD related suicide. It is a hard life in the military. Like CM wrote last week, the military shouldn’t be actively hiring spent cartridges. It is up to all people who join to fall under one purpose rather than expect preferential treatment. If corporates were to adopt the biased recruiting practices of the ADF they’d be fined, jailed and outed.

Yet our Minister for Defence is pushing for a “let’s turn our armed forces into a social experiment”agendaThe ADF has rolled out a “100 days for change” programme to encourage indoctrination of social diversity. Not diversity of thought or skill but identity. The Navy even painted finger nails pink to celebrate they were doing our bit. What a slap in the face of those who have served/currently serve.

As written last week, the ADF’s own gender study showed that half the female troops it was  designed to help think its pointless. Morale is skipping along at all time lows and people wishing to quit the military keeps climbing. Why does the military top brass not see that boosting morale won’t come from investing in magic pixie dust body armor to protect against hurt feelings? Yet the Department of Defence wants the ADF to double down on this stupidity.

Those that serve in the military just want to know that the person next to them is the most capable and solid individual both physically and mentally. In the pitch of battle, someone who will get feelings hurt when a commander gives an order will likely cost lives. Soldiers even have red cards they can pull on their commanding officers if they feel triggered during training. To that end soldiers know that gender, sexual orientation, race or religion play next to know part in a fire fight. Skill, courage and bravery do.

If the PC brigade has its way the next thing we know, LGBTQI battalions will march in rainbow camouflage. Sexual orientation and gender are irrelevant. The tasks don’t change on the field of battle.

If only CM’s grandfather Lt. Norman Martin Peterson – who served from 1939-45 – was able to read this nonsense! He was an eloquent and graphic writer from the battlefields of Crete, North Africa and the Pacific Islands but something tells me he would launch a verbal barrage to smash these PC fools into surrender.

Minister Payne should wake up and show the type of “pride” in the armed forces as one that is feared and respected. Is it any wonder we are among the most desired peace keepers because of our record of not being trigger happy cowpeople? As Gen Mattis once said of Aussie SAS troops, “I wish we had more of you sons of bitches among our allies!

The way we are politicizing the military shows the real enemy resides within our barracks. China is writing anti-PC taunts as we sleep. Maybe they don’t even need the speakers. Just make a YouTube video and stream it direct to hacked cellphones.

Honorable lies to defend the freedom we’re prepared to give up

In a world increasingly pushing for safe spaces, trigger warnings and legal remediation for hurt feelings, the ANZAC Memorial at Be’er Sheva makes a mockery of today’s society. Two gentlemen from the First World War make this point clearly. Both lied about their age to defend freedom. They weren’t alone.

The first soldier, H.T. Bell,  lied about his age so he could enlist, despite being only 14. He also lied about his name. He died as a light horseman in the Battle of Be’er Sheva where the ANZACs defeated the Turks by charging their cannons and machine guns. The authorities contacted the Wickhams (his alias) to inform their son he died only to discover they didn’t have one. They eventually tracked down the Bells who thought he’d run away to be a jackaroo. He was only 16.

Lt.Col L.C. Maygar VC was 48 at the time of the battle. Having won a Victoria Cross, the Empire’s highest order of valor, during the Boer War he was too old to serve in WW1. So he chopped his age by 6 years to make the cut. Sadly he died in battle but willingly volunteered to be put in harms way.

The actions of a youth and someone old enough to be his father fought for what they believed in. This battle was instrumental in booting the Ottoman Empire from what is now Israel. These soldiers tricked the Turks by charging them. Light horseman traditionally dismounted and then attacked on foot. Knowing their situation was bleak, 800 soldiers ran under the heavy guns effective line of fire and slaughtered the enemy.

When one absorbs the power of The Be’er Sheva memorial, it strongly reflects the values of the time. The sacrifices of the 1000s buried there reveal how seriously they were prepared to defend the very freedoms we seem so willingly prepared to give up today for the sake of political correctness.

Lest we forget their bravery.

Inviting or inciting violence?

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As a father of two daughters the idea of child grooming gangs is a chilling prospect. One of my children was sexually molested on a Tokyo subway aged only 13. Nationality doesn’t matter. Religion doesn’t matter. I took time off work every morning for months trying to find the perpetrator. Had I caught him, care for what happened to me mattered not. Vigilante justice? Call it what you will. It doesn’t get more personal when your own blood, especially a child, is the innocent victim. Any parent who loves their kids would contemplate such sacrifice. When people realise that the authorities are willfully turning a blind eye to obvious crimes, law makers should not be surprised if vigilantism and chaos become the by-product. The arrest of Tommy Robinson has all of the hallmarks of the judiciary inviting the ‘hellfire‘ on themselves. CM often gets criticized for defending free speech as if it is some gross distortion of the facts. That the looming Orwellian dystopia CM describes doesn’t exist.

Whether one agrees with Tommy Robinson’s views or not, one cannot fault his passion to bring to light the problems of child rape gangs in Britain and the political correctness to hide the predominantly ‘Asian’ nature of the perpetrators. Millions (and growing) have seen his 75 minute live-stream video outside Leeds Court where he was summarily arrested for ‘suspicion of breaching the peace‘. Despite having the alleged defendants and spectators scream obscenities like “go f*ck your mother!” or “your wife is a prostitute” or “I’m here to see your mum” and others push him in front of the police, nothing happened to them. Why the sexual references? The police officers claimed they didn’t see him being physically assaulted but suggested they’d get a warning if they did witness.

Robinson did absolutely nothing violent, obscene or provocative to warrant an arrest. Disturbing the peace? The amount of people that came up to him unsolicited congratulating his work, asking to go on future marches and take selfies was apparent. The fact he has two best selling books on Amazon is testament to him being far from a lone voice. Is it any wonder the authorities want to gag him? Should those that support him be dragged in front of the courts too?

He made numerous references about being aware of his restrictions the day he was arrested last week. He spoke to nearby police to ensure and confirm he wasn’t crossing lines. He made the reference on his video that the police were likely monitoring it to try to nab him on any remote technicality. Well they did. He was aware of the risks. He may well have violated his court order on a “legal” technicality. CM isn’t a lawyer but the video didn’t appear to show disorder. He was jailed for 13 months and on top of that a media gag was placed by the court on discussing details of his trial. Should we be surprised that 1,000s marched on Downing St?

CM documented the two decades of cover ups contained in the independent inquiry into the Rotherham child grooming scandal which was along the lines of what Robinson was reporting on in Leeds. In April we wrote:

“The details of the Rotherham grooming gang scandal was tabulated in an independent inquiry looking at the problem between 1997-2013 showing the extent of the cover up. The table above shows the actions taken after 157 complaints about child grooming in Rotherham were made to the South Yorkshire Police since 2013. The Inquiry tabulates a case of a father being arrested for trying to get his daughter out of a rape den. A 12yo girl was raped in a park then doused in gasoline and threatened with being lit if she said anything about what had happened. The sad thing is that these gangs are wide spread – Rotherham, Rochdale, Newcastle, Bristol, Aylesbury, Oxford, Peterborough, Keighley, Newham, Leeds, Bradford, Telford, Sheffield and London. The report discusses how the gangs transfer the children within the ‘safe houses; in the network to keep the industry clandestine.”

The gory details are all in the report. CM encourages people to read the contents to be aware of how terribly young kids have been groomed, threatened and undoubtedly psychologically damaged for life. Many have tried to commit suicide. It is a travesty. Even if you hate what Tommy Robinson stands for, at the very least open your eyes to the industrial level of this crime. Take this example:

Child F (2006) was a victim of serious sexual abuse when she was a young child. She was groomed for sexual exploitation by a 27-year-old male when she was 13. She was subjected to repeated rapes and sexual assaults by different perpetrators, none of whom were brought to justiceShe repeatedly threatened to kill herself and numerous instances of serious self-harm were recorded in the case file, including serious overdoses and trying to throw herself in front of cars...doctors were seriously concerned about her because of the number and seriousness of hospital admissions over such a short time, many associated with serious drug misuse and self-harm.”

This is what the Inquiry had to say about the Police:

We deal with the response of South Yorkshire Police at some length throughout this report. While there was close liaison between the Police, Risky Business and children’s social care from the early days of the Risky Business project, there were very many historic cases where the operational response of the Police fell far short of what could be expected. The reasons for this are not entirely clear. The Police had excellent procedures from 1998, but in practice these appear to have been widely disregarded….We were contacted by someone who worked at the Rotherham interchange in the early 2000s. He described how the Police refused to intervene when young girls who were thought to be victims of CSE (child sexual exploitation) were being beaten up and abused by perpetrators. According to him, the attitude of the Police at that time seemed to be that they were all ‘undesirables’ and the young women were not worthy of police protection.

The Council was no better:

In 2004-2005, a series of presentations on CSE were first made to councillors and then other relevant groups and agencies, led by the external manager of Risky Business, from Youth Services. The presentations were unambiguous about the nature and extent of the problem…In 2006, a Conservative councillor requested a meeting with the Council Leader at which he expressed his concerns about CSE. This had come to his attention via constituents. He told the Inquiry that the Council Leader advised him the matters were being dealt with by the Police and requested that he did not raise them publicly…

Interviews with senior members revealed that none could recall the issue ever being discussed in the Labour (Party) Group until 2012Given the seriousness of the subject, the evidence available, and the reputational damage to the Council, it is extraordinary that the Labour Group, which dominated the Council, failed to discuss CSE until then. Some senior members acknowledged that that was a mistake. Asked if they should have done things differently, they thought that as an administration they should have tackled the issues ‘head on’, including any concerns about ethnic issues.”

In any event, when Robinson was arrested there was no other media present covering what should be viewed as a highly contentious, topical and heinous crime against human rights. Anyone with a heartbeat should be repulsed by the systematic rape of 11 year olds. 12yo girls shouldn’t have their tongues nailed to tables nor raped by 30 men in one day nor have 6 pregnancies in 4 years. It would be fair to say that the majority of Brits (much less the world) would be appalled by what has been going on. Yet media blackouts are deemed a preferable response by the judiciary. The people who have been covering it up should be convicted  as accessories, not those trying to expose such a shameful episode. Look how well that worked for Angela Merkel after the Cologne New Year’s Eve assaults were eventually exposed several years back.

No-one in their right minds wants to invite vigilantism but the seemingly farcical arrest of Robinson would seem to be inviting it rather than his videos inciting it. It is clear people in Britain are fast realizing that freedoms are being removed. Reprehensible legislation is being introduced to silence the truth. Whether once can say with certainty that this is 1984, it would seem things are pointing toward it. Politically motivated violence in Germany is surging post legislation designed to gag the populace.

Robinson is no saint. He has a checkered past which he freely admits to in his book, Enemy of the State. Yet his arrest has caused outrage around the world. If the authorities thought banging him up would limit the damage they’ve made a grave mistake. Anything that is pulled or deleted finds a way of resurfacing and ballooning the awareness. Conversely some people have posted pictures of him having been assaulted and bashed in prison (this has not happened since this arrest) as a way to incite more anger. If his followers want to save him, misreporting facts, trying to scale the gates at 10 Downing St or threatening the judge that convicted him won’t help the cause. They can’t swing public opinion with the two wrongs argument.

Growing numbers of the British population are getting fed up and if more of this type of politically correct hand-wringing continues the problem is likely to get out of control. The government and judiciary may think limiting the actions of those deemed to ‘incite’ division by jailing them will quell further unrest. However they should beware the public reckoning they ‘invite’. Will cooler heads prevail? At this juncture, it would appear not.

We say again, while it is debatable as to whether Tommy Robinson was in violation of his court order on a legal technicality, the bigger issue is the thousands of children that have been permanently damaged by the deranged acts of sick people. No matter what their background, colour, race or religion they should be given the maximum penalty for raping children if found guilty. They may not have taken lives, but they have stolen the sanctity of it. To that end, Robinson should be congratulated for bringing it to light, not censured. It is not just Tommy that deserves the right of free speech but the voice given to those poor children silenced for decades while those who were supposed to protect them turned a blind eye. Perhaps even SJWs will find it in their hearts to see the virtue of Robinson’s actions to stand up for those that couldn’t defend themselves. His only weapon is free speech. If some want to call his actions ‘hate speech‘ then they only prove how little they truly care for real victims.

June 1943 on the operating table in New Guinea

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From June 1943 – a day in the life of the Field Ambulance,

Last night the Fuzzy Wuzzies brought him in on the improvised stretcher – he had copped a mortar bomb 12 hours ago and was despairingly low…

…now that surgeon battled to keep that little spark of life flickering for as long as he did was a miracle…picture a scene in a ramshackle thatched hut and the faces of the M.O. nad his orderlies reflected in the light of a hurricane lamp as they worked quietly and efficiently over the wounded man. A bottle of blood serum hangs from the rafters and from it leads the glass and rubber tubing into a vein. The serum drips steadily and the casualty opens his eyes for an instant and gives a long sigh – the M.O. mutters “he may make it”…but two hours later he passed away quietly and the long struggle for life had been in vain…

…next day his cobbers carried him to his grave, stumbling, slipping and sometimes wading thigh deep through a boulder strewn stream to get to a suitable site…a few words, simple but sincere said by his NCO and the grave is filled in and a bottle containing the dead man’s particulars are placed on the grave and a rough cross of saplings tied together with vines and his tin hat placed over it was erected.

His cobbers filed silently back to their hut engrossed in their own thoughts and flopped on their bunks…one man, veteran of Libya, Greece & Crete picked up the Army newssheet scanned through it then suddenly got to his feet with a ferocious look and said, “Christ almighty wouldn’t it ______ you” and stormed out of the hut.

I wondered what had “bitten him” so picked up the paper he had thrown down – and suddenly understood – “Strikers demand holiday in lieu of Anzac Day”…The opinions of the rest of the occupants are not fit to print!