Criminal Justice Bill Stage 3
Paul Martin MSP Amendment
UNISON Scotland very much welcomes the amendment
Assaults on members of fire brigades or emergency medical
personnel etc. to the Criminal Justice Bill.
As the largest union in Scotland representing
over 150,000 people working in public services we believe it
is essential that these workers are protected whilst carrying
out their employment. UNISON supports this amendment to the
Criminal Justice Bill.
Violence in the NHS
A recent survey carried out by UNISON showed
that over 40% of nurses and other NHS staff were being subjected
to physical and verbal abuse. Our experience is that public
servants are unfortunately subject to verbal and physical assaults,
surveys are showing an increase in assaults on NHS staff, and
that the incidents are not dealt with adequately.
Last year UNISON called for standardisation
across Scotland on the definition, recording and follow up on
violent and potentially violent incidents in the NHS. We want
to see training and procedures for dealing with verbal and physical
abuse, and clear communication to the public that it is not
part of the job to be physically or verbally abused. This amendment
would clearly go some way to meeting these demands as regards
Accident and Emergency staff.
Violence Against All Public Servants
Whilst we support the amendment to make it
an offence to assault, resist, obstruct or hinder a members
of the fire brigade or member of any emergency medical service,
UNISON would also wish the amendment to be extended to other
public service workers who are in contact with the public.
UNISON would wish to include:
Nurses and all NHS staff throughout the
health service, not just in Accident and Emergency Departments.
Social Work and Social Care staff.
Environmental Health Officers.
Benefits Agency Staff.
Teachers and school support staff.