Have firefighters been conned into giving hospital patients lifts home?

[Image: West Midlands Fire Service.]

It is the Fire and Rescue Service, but This Writer can’t really see how hospital patient transportation can be considered a rescue.

And if the contract is supposed to be worth £2 million over three years but has only raised £300,000 in half that time, then it seems the West Midlands service has been conned.

I know councils are strapped for cash, but it occurs that taking firefighters away from their main responsibilities and paying them less than the agreed amount is counterproductive.

There is a petition to stop firefighters being asked to work in this manner and to make them fully available for emergencies once again.

Please consider signing it here.

Firefighters have lost front-line staff and engines to fulfil ‘loss-making’ care contracts, sources have claimed.

West Midlands Fire Service had agreed a two-year contract with councils to respond to emergency call-outs from OAPs who have fallen at home, while one local authority is also paying for hospital patient transportation.

Firefighters and civilian staff can and have volunteered to take part in the flexible contract scheme, which can boost their wages by 25 per cent.

Sources say employees had been told that the social care agreements would earn the cash-strapped Fire Service £2 million over three years.

But it is claimed just £300,000 has been raised so far in 18 months, while some firefighters and engines have been taken off the frontline to take part in the schemes.

Source: Fury as firefighters ‘taken off frontline to drive elderly home from hospital to meet care contracts’ – Birmingham Mail

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