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August 21, 2000, RichmondA BC Ambulance Service (BCAS) dispatch policy will put the lives of Princeton and area residents at risk. The BCAS released a memo to the regional dispatch centre on August 15th, 2000 advising changes to the areas cross cover policies. The British Columbia Ambulance Service memo instructs emergency medical dispatchers to not provide cross coverage during the evening hours should the Princeton Ambulance not be in service due to lack of staff.

Ambulance service in Princeton has been a subject of controversy since the areas fulltime ambulance staff was downsized. Ambulance Paramedics of BC, CUPE Local 873 President and spokesperson, John Strohmaier stated his concern with this latest move to further reduce the front line of emergency medical services in rural BC. Strohmaier said, “Its policies like this that continue to put lives at risk.” Strohmaier also said, “British Columbians have a right to expect a timely response from their ambulance service and its time that the BCAS live up to those expectations.”

Information: John Strohmaier, President, CUPE Local 873 (604) 728-2741

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