UNISON supports any measures that seek to reduce the hazards faced by our Ambulance members especially the unacceptably high level of aggression they have to deal with.
Flagging of addresses that are associated with previous instances of threatening, abusive or violent behaviour is one of the steps being taken to protect ambulance crews.
We are concerned however that existing approaches taken by Ambulance trusts are inconsistent as the systems in place have been largely developed in isolation. Neither are we convinced that all the potential sources of intelligence in this area are being accessed, such as information held by other NHS trusts and agencies and local authorities as well as the police.
UNISON believes that such an important issue should be governed by transparent national standards and guidelines. We also believe that the potential for flagging up dangerous individuals by name as well as address should be explored.
To this end UNISON is calling for a thorough review of current arrangements with the aim of producing recommendations for a national model based on best practice across Ambulance Trusts and drawing on systems used elsewhere in the NHS and public sector.
UNISON National Ambulance Sector 4 November 2008