News

Ambos plan first-ever strike – over firies doing their job

PARAMEDICS from the Northern Rivers are threatening to walk off the job for the first time ever on Friday week in a state-wide strike protesting budget cuts and regional changes they say will put lives at risk.

Health Services Union secretary Gerard Hayes said paramedics were concerned the expansion of the First Responder program is putting lives at risk. In the program, trained firefighters respond to medical emergencies.

Mr Hayes, a former paramedic, said simmering anger among paramedics escalated last week following the announcement about expanding the First Responder program.

He said with the program already established at Alstonville, the Northern Rivers could expect more First Responder-trained firefighters in the region.

"The state needs an extra 700 paramedics," he said.

"The community is being exposed to an unacceptable level of risk.

"Only a clinically-trained paramedic can arrive at an emergency with the tools and knowledge necessary to keep a suffering patient alive."

Mr Hayes said a location and time for a rally on February 15 by paramedics in the Northern Rivers had not been decided yet.

Health Minister Jillian Skinner condemned the threat of strike action, saying the First Responder program had been in operation since 2005, covering 48 regional locations including Alstonville.

"I want to assure the community that the closest NSW ambulance paramedic will always be dispatched immediately in an emergency," she said.

"The program aims to use all available resources to treat patients who need urgent medical care.

"That is why, on occasion, Fire and Rescue personnel will be tasked to an emergency in addition to paramedics - not instead of."

Topics:  nsw ambulance service, paramedics



Why this Lismore mum will no longer be forced to sell her home

MUCH NEEDED: Rotary Club of Summerland Sunrise donated almost $4500 to the Mitchell family for renovations to support mobility for their son Isaac, who has cerebral palsy. Pictured is Rose Mitchell and Isaac (foreground), with (from left) Past President Andrew Heap, Josephine Saunders, President Zell Bennett, and Graham Meineke (background).

A local club has made a huge difference for this family

Surfrider Foundation to give voice to Ballina surfers

BURIED: This steel anchor, a component of the planned Lighthouse Beach shark barrier, is now completely buried along with several others after two days of big swell and high tides.

A "positive outcome” from the shark barrier debacle.

Buyers forking out millions

Owners benefiting from undersupplied Northern Rivers market

Local Partners

What's on the small screen this week

Jessica Marais in a scene from the TV series The Wrong Girl.

A NEW romantic comedy debuts while footy codes ramp up for finals.

Airbourne talk drop bears, beer and taxes

Airbourne have a new album coming out and a new tour on the way.  Photo Contributed

Airbourne release album for the aussie battler

Pippa Middleton had 3000 private photos stolen

Author Pippa Middleton

Author's account hacked to access 3000 private photos

Gruen star discovers the body's limits in new hit TV show

Todd Sampson tries out MMA fighting during TV series BodyHack.

Gruen star pushes the limits in new TV series

Deftones return to Australia with string of dates

Deftones are back in town. Photo Contributed

World renowned nu-metal pioneers return

How the Gruen guy's t-shirts took on a life of their own

Documentary filmmaker and Gruen panellist Todd Sampson.

What started out as simple workwear has become a trademark

Buyers forking out millions

Owners benefiting from undersupplied Northern Rivers market

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

Couple build their own 'tiny house' for $45k

Holly Bowen and Oli Bucher built their "tiny house" themselves, only hiring a plumber and an electrician. Photo/supplied

The house, which is built on a trailer and can be towed.

Sunshine Beach property breaks real estate record

The property overlooks Sunshine Beach, as the backyard lawn meets the sand.

Sunshine Beach mansion sale smashes real estate record

New $33 million development planned for Ballina Shire

The site of a proposed seniors living development at Skennars Head.

Plans include 211 homes, clubhouse and recreational facilities

SOLD: Historic hotel finds new owner

Post Office Hotel Grafton

Photo Adam Hourigan / The Daily Examiner

Pub in new hands and heading in a brand new direction