Sentences for threatening emergency responders too easy, ambulance workers say
People who threaten emergency workers do not receive tough enough sentences, ambulance workers in Oost Nederland said to De Gelderlander. Some ambulance workers do not see the point in filing a complaint anymore.
"My clients feel like they are completely not being taken seriously," lawyer of three ambulance workers who were threatened on the job Ruth Jager said.
A 58-year-old woman threatened Jager's clients with a meat cleaver. She received a sentence of 60 hours of community service and had to pay 750 euros in compensation.
The sentence contradicts a new policy pushed for by Minister of Justice Ferd Grapperhaus, which forbids community service for people who threatened public servants. "The minister's words are empty," Jager said.
The emergency responders also had to flee for their lives last year. In 2019, a nurse in Asperen received death threats from a patient while driving him to hospital.
"There were more incidents," Jager said. "My clients want to say in the presence of the suspects the impact their actions have had. That possibility is taken from them because they are not allowed to be present at the hearing of the OM."
The OM said they empathize with the ambulance workers, but there was too little evidence, or a different form of punishment was chosen in some instances.